Breast cancer is a complex disease that will affect 1 in 9 Canadian women during their lifetime. Breast cancer incidence increases with age; however, 20-25% of all breast cancers occur in women less then 49 years of age. Breast cancers in younger women are usually more aggressive and have poorer survival rates. Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging (DITI) is also know as thermography. DITI specific to breast health is commonly referred to as breast thermography. Breast thermography is a painless, non invasive, imaging procedure aimed at detecting thermal heat patterns. It is used as part of an early detection program to give women of all ages the opportunity to increase their chances of detecting breast disease at an early stage.
Thermography’s role in breast cancer and other breast disorders is to help in early detection and monitoring of abnormal physiology. This 15 minute non invasive test is a valuable procedure for alerting your medical practitioner to the possibility of underlying breast irregularities that are indicators of potential disease. When used with other integrated procedures, it helps to provide a comprehensive evaluation of an individuals breast health.
Thermography is aimed at improving the chances for detecting fast-growing, active irregularities in the intervals between mammogram screenings or when mammography is not indicated by screening guidelines for women of identified age groups. We recommend our patients 49 to 74 years of age also follow the Canadian Task Force recommendations on mammography screening. DITI is not a replacement for mammograms, rather a valuable physiologic and functional tool providing a more robust, multi-modal approach to breast health monitoring.
Breast thermography – initial plus baseline (2 sets of images)- $299
Breast thermography- annual (1 set if images) – $250
Understanding Risk Factors
Conclusive research has established certain risk factors as contributing to the potential occurance of breast cancer. Several modifiable risk factors for breast cancer are related to the way we live – making changes in these areas of your life will help you to reduce your risk of breast cancer.
Non-modifiable Risk Factors (factors your can’t control)
- Gender & age
- Personal cancer history
- Family cancer history & genetics
- Early menstruation & late menopause
- Breast density & conditions
Modifiable Risk Factors (factors you can control)
- Body weight
- Diet & dietary habits
- Physical activity
- Alcohol consumption
- Radiation exposure
- Environmental influences
- Hormone imbalance
- Birth control pills
- Hormone replacement therapy
The Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health provided the following recommendations, specific to women of average risk of breast cancer, regarding the use of mammography: (similar recommendations from the US Task Force)
For women aged 40 – 48: NOT recommend for routine screening with mammography.
For women aged 49-74 years: recommend for routine screening with mammography every 2 to 3 years.
DITI can be used by any women as a preventive health tool to better understand your breast health. It can provide women under 49 years with a complementary option and a safe breast health monitoring tool between recommended mammography scans.
DITI can provide you with early indication information by flagging physiological areas of concern that could lead to the development of breast cancer. Thereby empowering you and your Doctor to make an educated decision regarding the subsequent strategic use of diagnostic tools like ultrasound, mammography & biopsy.
Doctors do not yet know how to prevent breast cancer. However, you can increase your chances of detecting breast cancer in its earliest stages by understanding the need for, and participating in an early detection program. If cancer is found early, there are choices for treatment. With prompt treatment, the outlook is good. In fact, most women treated for early breast cancer will be free from breast cancer for the rest of their lives.
Also, don’t overlook that MEN account for 1% of all Breast Cancers
Call to book your Breast Thermography: 604-888-8325
At Integrated Health Clinic we use the Meditherm med2000 Iris 7.5 Advanced Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging Camera. The Meditherm med2000 product received FDA approval in 1982 as an adjunct to mammography and has a 20 year history of successful performance and reliability. The Iris 7.5 is the Meditherm industry standard flagship and Integrated Health ClinicTM is proud to offer this medical grade imaging technology to our patients.
DITI (thermography) is a noninvasive evaluation technique that allows the examiner to visualize and quantify changes in skin surface temperature. An infrared scanning device is used to convert infrared radiation emitted from the skin surface into electrical impulses that are visualized in colour on a monitor. This visual image graphically maps the body temperature and is referred to as a thermogram. The spectrum of colours indicate an increase or decrease in the amount of infrared radiation being emitted from the body surface. Since there is a high degree of thermal symmetry in the normal body, subtle abnormal temperature asymmetry’s can be easily identified.
DITI is a highly sensitive, non-invasive and painless imaging tool that measures heat patterns in the body. It can be used as part of a comprehensive breast health program to evaluate and monitor for changes in breast tissue.
DITI is a physiological test. Abnormal and inflammatory tissues are more metabolically active which requires additional blood flow, increasing heat patterns in the affected area(s).
Clinical uses for DITI include:
- to define the extent of a lesion of which a diagnosis has previously been made;
- to localize an abnormal area not previously identified, so further diagnostic tests can be performed;
- to detect early lesions before they are clinically evident
In order to establish a baseline DITI exam, the first DITI is followed by another scan 3-months later. DITI is then recommended annually thereafter to best monitor for asymmetries or other changes from the initial baseline reading.
The exam appointment is scheduled for 15 min. If this is your first set of thermography images, please arrive 15 minutes early to complete the Thermography Intake Form. Note: Cold Stressing will NOT be used for your routine exam, meaning that there is no requirement for you to immerse your hands in cold water before imaging.
Integrated Health Clinic uses Electronic Medical Interpretation, Inc. for reporting Thermography results.
- Real-time online reporting via our secure extranet (not email)
- Access 24 hours a day
- Quick turnaround for regular reports
- Urgent option guarantees under 24 hours
- Ready-to-print reports compiled complete with all images
- Board-Certified MD Thermologists
- Exceeds all HIPPA Compliance
Call to book your Breast Thermography: 604-888-8325
Preparation for the Exam
The Meditherm Imaging Camera is an advanced and sophisticated device with high thermal sensitivity and tremendous image quality. Consequently, unlike with older generation cameras, patient pre-exam considerations and preparations are minimal. The key general point to remember is that you should avoid things that could impact your body temperature. The following guidelines apply:
- On the day of your exam avoid activities that could significantly impact body temperature. Examples include Saunas, intense physical activity, full body massage, etc.
- Do not consume hot beverages 30 min prior to your exam.
- Showers and baths are permited on the day of your exam but not within 1-hour prior to the exam and do not linger in the hot water.
- Make-up, deodorant, etc are permitted but should be lightly applied.
- We ask that you please put your hair up prior to your exam, or bring with you the necessary pins, clips or bands so that you are able to put your hair up and clear of your face and neck.
The exam appointment is scheduled for 30 min. This includes time for you to arrive at the clinic, complete the Thermography Intake Form, acclimatize to the exam room temperature and complete the imaging.
Note: Cold Stressing will NOT be used for your routine exam, meaning that there is no requirement for you to immerse your hands in cold water before imaging. For additional information on Cold StressingPlease Click Here.
At Integrated Health Clinic we use the Meditherm med2000 Iris 7.5 Advanced Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging Camera for all exams. This camera maximizes the potential of thermography for the best possible adjunctive assessment to aid treatment by delivering medical grade sensitivity and specificity. The Meditherm med2000 product received FDA approval in 1982 as an ajunct to mammography and has a 20 year history of successful performance and reliability. The Iris 7.5 is the Meditherm industry standard flagship and Integrated Health ClinicTM is proud to offer this medical grade imaging technology to our patients.
Q. I hear from some people that you need to “cold stress” the patient. What is “cold stressing”? Do I really need to do it?
A. Cold stressing is a test to measure sympathetic function. It is a useful test for a some conditions including RSD (CRPS). Protocols used with the Meditherm system for breast screening do not require routine cold stressing.
Q. Who certifies your thermographers?
A. Thermography technicians are trained by Dr. Peter Leando, Phd, Medical Director of Meditherm, and Board Member of the American College of Clinical Thermology at Duke University. The American College of Clinical Thermology is an accredited medical association.
Q. Who reads the images and reports?
A. Images are sent to an interpretation service who employ Medical Doctors who are all board certified as Thermologists by the American College of Clinical Thermology at Duke University. These doctors have many years experience and are able to ask for second opinions whenever necessary.
Q. How quickly will I get my report back?
A. Reports are normally ready within 48-72 hours. You may collect your report when it is ready or allow for mailing time. If you need your report within 24 hours you can pay an ‘urgent’ fee.
We encourage you to visit Integrated Health ClinicTM to meet with our physicians and learn more about Breast Thermography.