I recently wrote an article about the dangers of mammograms and I briefly mentioned another tool for monitoring breast health: breast thermography. I first learned about it from a local natural health center. Breast thermography combines digital technology with infra-red camera imaging to provide a safe way to determine breast health. There is no radiation. There is no breast compression. And it can determine problems 5-7 years before traditional medical testing can find anything.

I found some great information on the website breastthermography.com, including this information about it:

The use of Digital Infrared Imaging is based on the principle that metabolic activity and vascular circulation in both pre-cancerous tissue and the area surrounding a developing breast cancer is almost always higher than in normal breast tissue. In an ever-increasing need for nutrients, cancerous tumors increase circulation to their cells by holding open existing blood vessels, opening dormant vessels, and creating new ones (neoangiogenesis). This process frequently results in an increase in regional surface temperatures of the breast. DII uses ultra-sensitive medical infrared cameras and sophisticated computers to detect, analyze, and produce high-resolution diagnostic images of these temperature variations. Because of DII’s extreme sensitivity, these temperature variations may be among the earliest signs of breast cancer and/or a pre-cancerous state of the breast (3,6,7,8,9).

While mammography relies primarily on finding the physical tumor, DII is based on detecting the increased blood vessel circulation and metabolic changes associated with a tumor’s genesis and growth. By detecting minute variations in normal blood vessel activity, infrared imaging can frequently suggest a pre-cancerous state of the breast or the presence an early tumor that is not yet large enough to be detected by physical examination, mammography, or other types of structural imaging (3,6,7,8,9).

Proponents of breast thermography say that this is a complementary tool to mammograms and should not replace mammograms. I encourage you to visit Breastthermography.com and read the case studies and see the images. That helped me understand how this tool can be used. I found it very, very interesting and amazing; and I am convinced this tool should be used by all women to check their breast health. Breast thermography is an especially great tool for women who are on hormone replacement, nursing, or have fibrocystic, large, dense, or enhanced breasts as their mammograms can be difficult to read. There are no difficulties in reading digital infrared scans for these types of breast differences.

An initial breast scan is recommended by age 20, then scans every three years until age 30, and yearly scans after age 30. To find a qualified breast thermography center, visit the website breastthermography.org.

Even though it’s new to me, this is not a new technology. In 1982 DII was approved by the FDA for use as an adjunctive breast cancer screening procedure. Due to many reasons, including health care politics and insurance issues, interest in this technology was placed on hold.

I hope this article provides some information for you to research and think about. We live in a time when we need to take an active role in our health.

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