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Radar-based microwave imaging techniques have been proposed for early stage breast cancer detection. A considerable challenge for the successful implementation of these techniques is the reduction of clutter, or components of the signal originating from objects other than the tumor. In particular, the reduction of clutter from the late-time scattered fields is required in order to detect small (subcentimeter diameter) tumors. In this paper, a method to estimate the tumor response contained in the late-time scattered fields is presented. The method uses a parametric function to model the tumor response. A maximum a posteriori estimation approach is used to evaluate the optimal values for the estimates of the parameters. A pattern classification technique is then used to validate the estimation. The ability of the algorithm to estimate a tumor response is demonstrated by using both experimental and simulated data obtained with a tissue sensing adaptive radar system.