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Clinical Thermography, otherwise known as Digital Infrared Imaging(DII), is based on a careful analysis of skin and tissue temperatures. It is a risk assessment procedure that allows practitioners to see where there is abnormal chemical and blood vessel activity in body tissue. It is a non-intrusive procedure using the technology of the Infrared Camera and state of the art software.
With each scan an image is formed which is evaluated for signs of possible imbalances. Extensive research and investigation performed at prestigious medical teaching institutions such as John Hopkins University Medical School, have established normal values for the distribution of heat in each region of the body. Variations from these normal values are measured and correlated with suspected injuries or diseases in the same way a blood or urine laboratory study is interpreted.
Over thirty years of clinical use and more than 8,000 peer-reviewed studies in medical literature have established thermography as a safe and effective means to examine the human body. It is FDA approved in the United States since 1982 and has been used in Europe for over twenty years. Thermography is a non-invasive test. It simply is creating an image of your breasts and body by measuring your heat. There is no contact of any kind, nor is there any pain or radiation.
According to IACT (International Academy of Clinical Thermology)based in the United States, breast thermography is a diagnostic procedure that images the breasts to aid in early detection of imbalances in breast tissue. It is based on the principle that chemical and blood vessel activity in both pre-cancerous tissue and the area surrounding a developing breast cancer is typically always higher than in normal breast tissue. Since pre-cancerous and cancerous masses are highly metabolic tissues, they need an abundant supply of nutrients to maintain their growth and this can increase the surface temperature of the breast.
State of the art breast thermography uses ultra-sensitive infrared cameras and sophisticated computers to detect, analyze and produce high-resolution diagnostic images of these temperature and vascular changes. Breast thermography is a risk assessment tool.
No. Thermography, like mammography is a screening tool.Thermography identifies abnormal physiological changes in your breasts that may be unhealthy. Mammography, a type of x-ray, identifies certain structures in the breast that can potentially be cancer. With both Mammography and Thermography, definitive diagnosis is done by other procedures such as a biopsy or lumpectomy.
Because mammograms detect structural changes, a lump or mass of a size detectable on an X-ray is already present in breast tissue by the time a mass is detected in a mammogram. The next step is further investigation by ultrasound and/or biopsy to diagnose the nature of the lump or mass, and to make treament decisions. At this point, it is often too late to implement preventive strategies alone and medical intervention is the norm of treatment.
In comparison, breast thermography candetect functional changes in breast tissue before tumours form and when the tumours are too small to be detected with X-rays. This is done without radiation, compression, contact or needles. Thermography scans are effective for women of all ages and with all types of breast tissue: young, dense pregnant, breastfeeding, pre- and post-menopausal, fibrocystic, with breast implants, and when on HRT.
No. OHIP does not cover the cost of Thermography. There are private health insurance companies that do cover the procedure. Inquire with your insurance company.
Yes, more than 8,000 peer reviewed studies supporting the benefit of thermography as a body and breast risk assessment tool.
A referral is not necessary.
Our scans are read by Dr. William C. Amalu, DC, DABCT, DIACT, FIACT Board Certified Clinical Thermologist, Diplomate: International Academy of Clinical Thermology, American Board of Clinical Thermography, American Board of Medical Infrared Imaging. Member - IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, International Academy of Clinical Thermology,
International Thermographic Society, American Academy of Thermology.
Full body thermography includes a breast scan, so is comprehensive. A full body thermogram which is suitable for both female and male adults, can provide risk assessment for: acute or chronic issues as serious as cancer, cardiovascular circulatory conditions, pre-stroke, nervous system disorders, repetitive strain injury, TMJ, arthritis, diabetes, melanoma, liver or kidney disease, thyroid disease, lung conditions, dental infections and, finally, breast imbalances.
To ensure accurate thermal images, the following should be followed:
This depends on the results of your initial scan. The followup scan may be recommended for a early as 3 months or on an annual basis.
Yes. Breast implants do not interfere with thermography. Breast Thermography is painless and safe, using no radiation or compression. It can be used effectively and safely for all women including pregnant or nursing women, women with dense breast tissue, and women with breast implants.
Thermography does not replace mammograms. Both procedures offer a different screening tool, breast thermography has the ability to give a warning signal in advance of tumor growth. Combined with an unprecedented role in risk assessment, screening for younger women, and possibly prevention, breast thermography offers women information that no other procedure can provide. Mammography is used to confirm and locate the suspicious growth. A multi modal approach should be utilized, including breast self-examinations, physical breast exams by a doctor, thermography, mammography and ultrasound as required.
Your initial appointment will take 30 minutes for the breast thermography and 50 minutes for a full body thermography. During this time you will complete the breast health questionnaire - and a detailed health history. You will then be taken to a private examination room where you will be asked to disrobe from the waist up for breast thermography and fully for a full body. This is in order to become acclimated to the temperature of the room. A female technician will be available to answer any questions. After 15 minutes,the technician will take a series of images including front, lateral, and oblique views of the breast including the underarm area and thyroid and, in full body, all images of the body.
Within approximately three weeks, you will return to our office and have the results presented to you in person by the Doctor of Natural Medicine. This follow-up appointment is complementary and can be booked before leaving your initial appointment.
Do you know that 23% of all breast cancers occur in women under 49?
This is the most common cancer in women in this age group. Breast cancers in younger women are usually more aggressive and have poorer survival rates. Breast thermography offers younger women a sensitive non-invasive risk assessment in (no radiation and painless) addition to the regular breast health check-ups beginning with baseline screening from age 20.
Women with a family history can be at greater risk, but 75% of women who get breast cancer have no family history of the disease. Regardless of your family history, if a thermogram is abnormal, you run a future risk of breast cancer that is 10 times higher than a first order family history of the disease. Thermography is the only technology to provide women with a future risk assessment. If discovered, certain thermographic risk markers can warn a woman that she needs to work with her Doctor to improve her breast health.
The Marseille System of classification provides strict criteria for rating Breast Thermography scans. The scans are reported on a scale of TH-1 to TH-5.
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