The numbers tell a compelling story: early screening and detection of cancer could save more than 7 million lives each year.
In January of this year, ezra launched our first MRI-based cancer screening program for prostate cancer. We chose prostate cancer because it has the highest incidence of cancer in men (1 in 9 men will get prostate cancer during their life), and because the current standard of care (PSA blood tests) is highly inaccurate and results in an extraordinary number of unnecessary prostate biopsies. In the U.S. alone, 1 million prostate biopsies are done every year, and the majority of them could be avoided.
A study published in The Lancet in February 2017 showed that a prostate MRI can detect 18% more clinically significant cancers, while decreasing the number of unnecessary biopsies performed by 27%.
Since launching our MRI-based prostate cancer screening, almost 1,000 individuals have signed up, hundreds of men have been scanned, and ezra has successfully helped our members find prostate cancer early and also avoid unnecessary biopsies.
From the beginning, our goal at ezra has been to offer a way to screen for cancer everywhere in the body that is fast, accurate, and affordable.
For the past year, my team and I have been spending countless hours live testing MRI scans, in order to build our proprietary full-body MRI scanning protocol, which we announced last Thursday.
Today, having a full-body MRI scan in a typical clinical setting would take 2 to 3 hours. Together with an incredible team of physicians, radiologists and MRI specialists, we have worked to reduce the scanning time for the ezra full-body protocol to approximately 60 minutes for men and 75 minutes for women.
In just about an hour, while covering up to 13 cancers in women and 11 in men. It is the most advanced scan of its kind, and it is now available at our Manhattan facilities.
At ezra, we’re building Artificial Intelligence to decrease scanning time while concurrently further increasing reliability.
By building organ-specific AIs, such as our Prostate AI, we help make radiologists more accurate and more efficient when analyzing scans.
Our prostate AI, currently undergoing FDA clearance processing, helps radiologists automate the functions of their job that are the most arduous: measuring the volume of the prostate, the size of lesions, and segmenting lesions for MR-US guided biopsy preparation.
Making full-body MRI cancer screening available to everyone means making it as affordable as possible. Right now, our full-body scan is $1950, a torso scan is $1350, and a pelvic and abdominal scan is just $675.
We also offer affordable installment pricing options, where members can pay for their scans in 12 monthly installments.
As we build our collection of AIs to optimize image acquisition and analysis, our goal is to bring down our prices as quickly as possible in order to make MRI cancer screening available to everyone.
Ezra is headquartered in New York City, the epicenter of oncology innovation.
Over the past few months, we have been fortunate to bring a number of world-class medical experts to the ezra Medical Advisory Board: Columbia University Medical Center doctors Azra Raza, Siddhartha Mukherjee, and Joseph Alukal, as well as Dr. Oguz Akin from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Radnet’s Dr. Lawrence N. Tanenbaum, Dr. John Melnick, and Dr. Charles Fiske.
Our mission at ezra is to detect cancer early for everyone in the world.
We plan to do so by offering fast, accurate, pain-free MRI-based cancer screening; provide access to expert radiologists, assisted by the ezra AI (once we obtain FDA clearance); and deliver compassionate, ongoing support from our team of ezra physicians and guides.
Our goal is to remove the stress, anxiety, and human error from the cancer screening process, and give people a better way to take proactive care of their health, year after year.