available at: sherwood park
Thermography, is an imaging procedure that uses an infrared camera to detect, record and produce an image (thermogram) of a patient’s skin surface temperatures (thermal patterns). Thermography represents these temperature patterns without the use of ionizing radiation and therefore poses no harm to the patient.
What is Thermography Screen For?
Because Thermography screens for variations in skin surface temperature its most common use has been as a supplemental diagnostic screening tool for the risk assessment of breast cancer. Thermography is able to do this because we know that cancerous tissue typically has a higher temperature than healthy tissue.
Thermography is a tool that can also be used for assessing the risk of:
- Vascular Disease because it is able to capture a unique view of the blood vessels in the body locating areas of unusual heat indicating abnormality or a lack of circulation.
- Rheumatology, Fever Detection (SARS, H1N1, Asian Bird Flu), Neuromusculoskeletal Disorders (detection of nerve irritations), Thyroid Disorders (via the heat produced by this gland), or even general inflammatory conditions that are difficult to diagnose like fibromyalgia.
How Do I Prepare For an Examination?
There are certain things you will have to follow to ensure accurate thermographic imaging:
- No sun exposure to areas being imaged for 5 days prior to examination.
- No use of deodorants, lotions, creams, powders, or facial makeup for full body or upper body scans, on the day of the exam.
- No shaving of the areas to be imaged the day of the exam.
- No treatment (chiropractic, acupuncture, TENS, physical therapy, electrical muscle stimulation, ultrasound, hot or cold pack use) or physical stimulation of the areas to be imaged for 24 hours prior to the exam.
- No exercise 4 hours prior to the exam.
- No bathing within 1 hour prior to the exam.
- No taking of any medications 4 hours prior to the exam.
- No nursing at least 1 hour prior to the exam.
- No stimulation of the breast tissue 24 hours prior to the exam.
What Can I Expect During The Examination?
During the examination you will be disrobed–from the waist up for breast exams or buttocks exposed for lower body exams–during part of the examination for both imaging and to allow for the surface temperature of the body to equilibrate with the room. A female technician is provided for all our female patients.
Who Would Benefit From Thermography?
- Every woman will benefit from Thermography, since 1 out of 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. Also, although women with a family history of breast cancer are at a higher risk 75% of women who develop breast cancer have no previous family history of it. Thermography can assess the risk of breast cancer up to 10 years before any other detection examination allowing for a prompt and timely treatment.
- It is well establish that those with a lifetime exposure of estrogen causes breast tissue proliferation (the increased, rapid reproduction of cells). Thermography contributes to the risk assessment of breast cancer by providing early warning of estrogen activity in breast tissue.
- Almost 1/3 of all breast cancers occur in Women under the age of 45. Thermography provides an non-invasive, radiation-free method of safely and painlessly monitoring breast tissue health over the long term.
- Women without children or women who have had their first child after age 30.
What Makes Thermography So Unique?
- Thermography uses no ionizing radiation and poses absolutely NO health risks to the patient. Consequently, scans may be performed at any frequency necessary.
- The thermographic procedure analyzes temperature patterns on the body that may or may not indicate the presence of a disease. Signs of pre-cancerous tissue, or early stage cancers that are too small to be found by physical examination and mammography, may be discovered with thermography.
- Difficulties in reading mammograms can occur in women who are on hormone replacement, nursing or have fibrocystic, large dense, or enhanced breasts. None of these breast tissue differences cause difficulties in reading thermograms.
- Because it takes 8 to 10 years for a dime-sized breast tumor to grow, an abnormal thermogram is the earliest indication that such a possibility is developing.