Thermography is a Safe Alternative to Mammography
22 Oct 2012
Will It Replace Mammography
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so it is fitting that we discuss breast cancer prevention and detection. Did you know that besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women? In fact, about 1 in 8 U.S. women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime.
The prevention starts with healthy habits and early detection requires regular breast exams. Mammography has been used for breast examination for years, and many doctors believe that it is the best test for detecting breast cancer early. However, there are other methods that are actually healthier for us, such as thermography. Not only is there a healthy alternative to mammography, but studies have shown that mammograms can actually increase your risk of breast cancer. Mammograms expose your body to radiation that can be 1,000 times greater than that from a chest x-ray, which unnecessarily puts you at further risk of radiation-induced cancer. Additionally, mammography compresses the breasts tightly and painfully, which could lead to a spread of any existing malignant cells.
Thankfully, thermography is a technology that could easily replace mammography. Thermography specifically measures inflammation in the body. It is now well-known that inflammation is the culprit responsible for many chronic diseases, including cancer. Thermography, or thermal imaging, creates a digital map of your body that illustrates heat patterns. It uses a scanning-type infrared camera that measures your body surface temperature, presenting the information as a digitized image. These thermal images, called thermograms, are analyzed for abnormalities that may be signs of disease in your body.
It is particularly good for assessing active areas of cancer cell formation, and is more effective and is significantly less invasive than mammography. Mammograms look for anatomical changes in the breast such as masses or lumps. Thermograms analyze for vascular changes in the breast. Increased blood into certain regions of the body increases the heat of that region. Areas of inflammation, cancer cell formation and active infection have elevated circulation. Thermography picks up this abnormal blood supply well before the cancer gets large enough to be noticed as a lump on a breast exam. Thermography can see cancer formation at the size of 256 cells, roughly the size of a pinhead. Mammograms can`t detect cancer until there are roughly 4 billion cells clumped together.
Thermography is the true method of cancer prevention. It is estimated that thermography can detect cancer formation 6-10 years before mammography can identify a tumor. This means that doctors can view changes before the actual formation of the tumor. With thermography as your regular screening tool, it’s likely that you would have the opportunity to make adjustments to your diet and lifestyle in order to transform your cells before they became cancerous.
Beyond Early Detection
There are many other benefits to thermography. The test provides reliable and accurate information for diagnosis, treatment and prognosis. Although most health insurance companies do not yet cover thermography, there are actually considerable financial savings over conventional investigations. Unlike most diagnostic tests, thermal imaging is not painful, non-invasive and quick. Plus, it makes no connection with your body, and does not emit any radiation.