What is Thermography?
Thermography is essentially an infared photograph of heat produced by the body. A thermographic camera takes a picture of these rays. Areas of the body that are more metabolically active and have more blood flow will produce more infrared rays and will be visible on the thermogram. Once pictures are taken they are then analyzed by a board certified thermologist.
The most common use of thermography is for breast health screening. Thermography is a wonderful tool for assessing physiological changes associated with fibrocystic breast disease, mastitis, mammary dysplasia and even cancer (or cancer risk). Cancer tissue is more metabolically active can be seen in its early stages – up to 10 years before a tumor is visible on a mammogram. As such, thermography is an excellent tool for assessing overall breast health. We use state-of-the-art Digital Infrared breast imaging and comprehensive treatment protocols to help women of all ages maintain healthy breasts for long and healthy lives.
Dr Franks, who practices in our Renton location, is one of the few board certified clinical thermographic technicians (CTT) in the Northwest. Our high quality radiometric camera, strict quality control guidelines and highly accurate interpretation service are the best around. Take advantage of this wonderful resource!
1982 FDA approved: Thermography was approved as an adjunctive diagnostic breast cancer screening procedure.
1950’s to present: Thermography for the purpose of breast cancer screening has undergone extensive research since the late 1950’s with more than 1000 peer-reviewed studies published in the medical literature.
What are the benefits of Thermography?
Breast health screening: Thermography is a wonderful tool for identifying breast conditions in women of all sizes, as well as young women, women with implants and conditions such as fibrocystic breast disease and mastitis two easily reversed conditions.
Prevention of breast cancer: Breast Cancer is the second-leading cause of death among women. Thermography can detect first signs that breast cancer may be forming – up to 10 years earlier than a mammogram or any other procedure. Earlier detection means there is time for prevention. Implementing comprehensive treatment can result in reversal of these changes and prevention of breast cancer.
No radiation or other risk to your health: Thermography is entirely safe since the camera is only receiving information from your body and does not itself emit anything.
No compression of the breast tissue: Thermography does not involve the painful compression of breast tissue that may increase chances of cancer spread.
Monitor your progress: See the results of your treatment without the use invasive and harmful radiation.
Mammography vs Thermography
A mammogram uses radiation to detect the internal anatomical structure of the breast. It is still considered the ‘Gold Standard’ for early detection of breast cancer. Thermography detects the infrared emitted from the body surface to measure the physiological changes occurring within the breasts. Thermography has the advantage of detecting physiological changes which may be associated with future cancer growth up to ten years earlier than what can be detected with a mammogram. This is a huge advantage.
Mammography has led to earlier detection of breast cancer leading to a 30-40% reduction in mortality rates from breast cancer. However, there is concern that low doses of irradiation can contribute to breast cancer.
When thermography and mammography are used together the detection of breast cancer increases by 10%. Ideally we would use thermography to monitor physiological changes in women’s breasts allowing for preventative treatment and resort to mammography to confirm significant findings and guide diagnosis of significant disease.
Thermography is available at our Tukwila, WA clinic location. Please call (206) 812-9988 for an appointment.