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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Thermography?

Breast Thermography is an imaging procedure where infrared images of the breast are analyzed and rated to determine breast anomalies which will produce metabolic changes. Thermography is non-invasive, safe and painless - no radiation or compression is used.

Breast Thermography is based on the premise that before the growth of abnormal cells is possible, a constant blood supply must be circulated to the growth area. Chemical and blood vessel activity in both pre-anomalous tissue and the area surrounding a developing breast anomaly is almost always higher than in the normal breast. Since pre-anomalous and anomalous masses are highly metabolic tissues, they need an abundant supply of nutrients to maintain their growth and this can increase the surface temperatures of the breast. Breast Thermography measures the heat generated by the microcirculation of blood in the breast during this process.

Why Thermography?

Thermal imaging has been an available medical test for more than 50 years now. Thermography is completely safe, does not expose a patient to any form of radiation, and it is a non-invasive and painless test with absolutely no adverse effects and with no contraindications. It can be used at any age and provides a diagnostic tool far superior to others in the early stages of some diseases.

It is always important to stay proactive and well informed in your own health care. In addition to your regular medical breast examinations, consider regular breast screening with Thermography, the results could change your life. Thermography is one of the best early warning systems available today.

 

What is "Meditherm Thermography"?

Meditherm Thermography is the only known and internationally accepted technology for MEDICAL THERMOGRAPHY.

 

What is "Medical thermography"?

Medical thermography is the ability to pick up the abnormal symptoms within the body at normal body temperature.

 

What is "hot spot"?

"Hot spot" are areas of heat that is detected in your body. "Heat" build up could generate from – infection, inflammation, cancer.

 

What is "cold spot"?

"Cold spot" are areas of "cold" that is detected in your body. "Cold" build up could generate from – feeling numb or not feeling anything at all.

 

Why to detect cancer?

"Cancer" falls into 2 groups:
(1) Fast growing cancer – where if you got these cancer cells, they will multiply very fast – and before you know it the cancer has not only spread (metastases → me-tas-ta-sis) but has also ADVANCED to a higher stage. Example of fast growing cancer – kidney, liver
(2) Slow growing cancer – where if you have this – it will take YEARS to detect. Example of slow growing cancer – breast. 1 cm lump size takes 8-10 years before it gets detected.

 

Why don't I just go the normal route that are available? Why do I want to take a thermography reading and end up paying for the radiation anyway?

(1) Medical thermography is NOT radiation. Thus – you can always return to take a re-scan within 2, 3, 6, 9-months period if an abnormal is detected. With other radiation methods (mammogram, CT, MRI) – you have a wait 12 months before you can re-take another image.
(2) Medical thermography is NOT ultrasound or X-ray. X-ray takes the image of "solid objects" within you – bones, lost penny, lost screwdriver. Ultrasound is measurement of SOUND VIBRATION against an object within your body and projected as an image.
(3) With the aid of thermography – by seeing the POINT OF ORIGIN of the area of interest – it will ASSIST with the imaging. Example – mammogram. If abnormality is detected in the L-shape area of the breast – the mammographer will be able to position the mammogram instrument better to yield a more exact reading.

 

Why do I want to know the temperature of each pixel?

Each part of your body is different temperature and reacts differently. Notice how cold your nose tip gets in winter – yet your eyes remain warm. Or how your shoulders will burn in the summer yet your neck is okay. Each part of the body reacts differently. It is the same when there is something wrong within. Those with hot spots will have a MUCH HIGHER temperature reading than what the normal body temperature is. Those with cold spots will have a MUCH LOWER temperature reading than what the normal body temperature is.

 

Why do I want to take a full body scan?

(1) In relation to the "hot" and "cold" spots – there is the chance that there might be an unknown underlying problem where the clinical symptoms are still to early to pick up.
(2) Some "pain" or "numbness" that you encounter is known as "referral pain" or "referral numbness". This means that the pain/numbness encountered is stemmed from some other "injury". It is originated from somewhere else in the body – but you feel it where you do. In order to determine if what you are feeling is "referral" or not – we would have to look at areas OUTSIDE of the area you indicate. This can only be done by taking the image of other regions of your body.

 

"Must" I do a full body scan?

NO – it is entirely up to you and your decision as there are costs involved. However, by taking a full body scan – we would have your "total medical thermography fingerprint" on file. Should you encounter any abnormalities in the future – your "fingerprint" will be ready with us for comparison.

 

Is medical thermography dangerous?

NO. There is NO radiation involved. There is NO injection involved.

 

How much is MUCH?

By taking the reading of two SYMMETRICAL areas – we will be able to take YOUR PERSONAL body temperature to calculate the DELTA-T difference between the normal and abnormal area located. Dependent upon the delta-T value – this will determine how much is much.

 

My results are "normal" - so why am I doing this?

First and foremost – REJOICE when your medical thermographic results are normal. It is the same as when you do your annual check up and find that everything is normal. You are doing this IF (1) you are someone who is PROACTIVE in maintaining your overall health (2) you are someone who wants to "catch" any abnormlity BEFORE finding it too late.

 

How is it Done?

A state-of-the-art FDA approved infrared imaging camera measures skin temperature and transmits this information to a computer which converts these radiometric measurements into images. These thermographic findings are evaluated based on 32 standard thermological signs and quantification criteria as set forth and accepted standards of clinical thermology. Temperature measurements will differ in various parts of the body, but in a normal healthy individual, the temperature changes should be relatively symmetrical. Once the images are acquired in a controlled setting they are sent for processing to our board certified clinical Thermologists for analysis and interpretation. Your written report is then returned to your imaging center in a few days and presented back to you with an explanation and follow up recommendations. Studies show that when breast thermography is used as part of a multimodal approach (clinical examination + thermography + mammography), 95% of early stage anomalies will be detected.

 

How is "medical thermography" different from "thermography"?

Medical thermography measures the abnormal thermography (hot/cold) of EACH INDIVIDUAL PIXEL. NOT the whole image. Thermography picks up everything under the sky – background, surrounding temperature, the temperature of the object (body, motor, hot plate, heated baby bottle). The reading is NOT SPECIFICALLY gear to the temperature of the HUMAN BODY.

 

How reliable is medical thermal imaging?

- Medical thermography is not "the key" or "the utopic solution". But it IS a way to pick up the abnormal growth early enough for action to be taken.
- Medical thermography is a RELIABLE ADJUNCT to the current radiation method available.
- The medical use of infrared thermography started shortly after 1950 in Germany, where long time before Prof. Czerny in Frankfurt am Main presented the first infrared image of a human subject (1928)

 

How do I prepare myself?

No make up. No cosmetics. No body lotion. These will all create a sheer film covering your real body temperature. After the imaging – you are free to apply all these. No need to fast. You can eat breakfast. No problems if you have your period. No danger to pregnancy. No danger to kids.

 

What is digital infrared Breast Imaging?

Digital Infrared Breast Imaging, or Breast Thermography, may be new information for you; therefore we have outlined the more frequently asked questions below. Should you have any questions that are not addressed here or simply need more information, please call us at (916) 784-9355.

Breast Thermography is a non-invasive screening procedure that detects and records infrared heat emissions from the breast, which can aid in the early detection of abnormal changes in breast tissue.

The procedure 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 almost always higher than in the normal breast. Since pre-cancerous and cancerous masses are highly metabolic tissues, they need an abundant supply of nutrients to maintain their growth. The cells release substances that stimulate the formation of new blood vessels (neoangiogenesis). This process results in an increase in surface temperatures of the breast.

State-of-the-art breast thermography uses ultra-sensitive infrared cameras and sophisticated computers to detect, analyze, and produce high-resolution images of these temperature and vascular changes. The procedure is both comfortable and safe using no radiation or compression. By carefully examining changes in the temperature and blood vessels of the breasts, signs of possible cancer or pre-cancerous cell growth may be detected years prior to being discovered using any other procedure. This provides for the earliest detection of abnormal breast tissue possible. Because of the extreme sensitivity of breast thermography, these temperature variations and vascular changes may be among the earliest signs of breast cancer and/or a pre-cancerous state of the breast.

 

Is Thermography Different Than a Mammogram or Ultrasound?

Yes. Thermography detects changes or abnormalities in physiology that can show up in the future as a tumor, detectable on a mammogram.

Unlike mammography and ultrasound, thermography is a test of physiology, meaning it looks for functional changes in breast tissue which may indicate trouble years before a tumor can be detected by other means. It detects and records the infrared heat radiating from the surface of the breasts. It can help in early detection and monitoring of abnormal physiology and the establishment of risk factors for the future development of cancer.

Mammography and ultrasound are tests of anatomy. They look at structure. When a tumor has grown to a size that is large enough and dense enough to block an x-ray beam (mammography) or sound wave (ultrasound), it produces an image that can be detected by a trained radiologist. Most cancers are detected by mammography when the diameter of the tumor has grown to the size of a dime and contains over 4 billion cells.

 

Does Breast Thermography Replace a Mammogram?

When used as part of a multi-modal approach (thermography + clinical examination + mammography), 95-98% of early stage breast cancers can be detected.

 

Who Should Have a Thermogram?

Thermography can be utilized by all women, all shapes, all sizes and all ages. It is not limited by breast density and is ideal for women who have had cosmetic or reconstructive surgery, women with large or small breasts, a history of fibrocystic breast disease, and women with dense breast tissue.

 

Can Thermography Diagnose Breast Cancer?

Neither mammography, ultrasound, nor thermography can diagnose cancer. Only a biopsy can definitely diagnose cancer. When used together, thermograms, mammograms, and breast clinical examinations offer the best screening evaluations for a woman breast health.

 

Is Breast Thermography Safe?

Yes! It is FDA approved in the United States and has been used there and in Europe for over twenty years. Thermography is a non-invasive test. This means that nothing is sent into your body. It simply is creating an image of your breasts by measuring your heat. There is no contact of any kind, nor is there any pain or radiation.

 

Is There a Hormone Imbalance in Your Breasts?

If a woman’s thermographic images suggest a relative progesterone deficiency (estrogen dominance), treatment of this condition may play an important role in prevention. A woman can use this information and call Integrative Wellness Center to see if you might benefit from a consultation and discover the natural choices that are available to balance your hormones and feel better emotionally and physically.

 

If I Have A Suspicious Mammogram or I Find a Lump in my Breast, Should I Have a Thermogram?

Yes. The information provided by a thermography study can contribute useful additional information which ultimately helps your doctor with management decisions. It is also important to establish a baseline for future comparison in order to monitor changes and the progress of any treatment.

 

What are the Guidelines for Thermography Screening?

One day there may be a single method for the early detection of breast cancer. Until then, using a combination of methods will increase your chances of detecting cancer in an early stage. These methods include:

  • Regular breast thermography for women of all ages, starting at age 25;
  • Mammography, when appropriate, for women over 50;
  • A regular breast examination by a health professional;
  • Monthly breast self-examination;
  • Personal awareness for changes in the breasts.

 

How Often Should Breast Thermography Be Done?

Annually for women 40 and over. More frequent intervals may be suggested for women with high risk thermograms in order to monitor them more closely or to follow improvements from treatment.

 

Is This Procedure Covered by my Medical Insurance?

Thermography is not reimbursable by insurance companies at this time. Though not covered by insurance, the screening is affordable for most women.

Your continued support of this life-saving technology may make this a mainstream test accepted by insurance companies in the future.