WHAT IS BREAST THERMOGRAPHY?
Breast Thermography uses state of the art technology which scans the breasts using an infrared camera to produce a “thermogram”. Thermocheck® system detects any abnormal heat patterns that can indicate infection, inflammation or a breast cancer. Breast tumours tend to have abnormal blood vessel patterns and increased metabolic activity that give off more heat than the surrounding tissue. These heat changes can occur between 6 and 10 years before a tumour is big enough to see on a mammogram. Therefore detecting this heat can enable earlier intervention. A persistently abnormal thermogram represents an increased risk. The blood vessel growth that accompanies cancer formation is termed neovascularization or angiogenesis. Neovascularization is the earliest sign of a rapidly growing tumour and can be detected with infrared technology.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BREAST THERMOGRAPHY WITH THERMOCHECK?®
- 100% safe, radiation-free, non-contact and painless.
- Very early detection of cancer risk (up to 10 years earlier than mammography).
- It is unique in its capacity to visually record physiological changes and metabolic processes.
- Cancers are associated with increased temperature and abnormal blood vessel patterns; both detected by Thermocheck®.
- 90% sensitivity (when properly conducted). This means that where there is an increased risk, thermography can correctly identify this in 90% of cases (one third of mammograms give false readings).
- Breast health Thermography Screening can be repeated as often as you like with no risk or radiation and are therefore is very suited for regular and frequent Breast health Screening including post-surgery or during treatment or in cases where a patient might be unwilling to proceed with surgery
- It is useful for young women for whom mammography is inappropriate due to 1) greater density of breast tissue and 2) greater sensitivity of their breast tissue to adverse effects of ionising radiation.
THERMOGRAPHY IS APPROVED TO BE USED ADJUNCTIVELY WITH MAMMOGRAPHY.
We do not promote Thermocheck® thermography as a replacement of mammography for the following reasons:
1. They are fundamentally different in what they uncover
- Mammography can detect an established physical mass in the breast (about the size of a small grape).
- Thermography detects metabolic and vascular thermal changes that occur sooner than a mass is established.
- A normal mammogram does not mean you have healthy breasts only that there is an absence of a structural lesion.
- A normal thermogram indicates that you have you have physiologically healthy breasts.
2. A mammogram may still be a necessary investigation where there are both physical and thermal changes in the breast.
WHERE CAN I HAVE A THERMOGRAPHY SCAN?
Breast thermography with Thermocheck® take place at our Harley Street Clinic in Central London in our private breast screening room.
ARE THERE ANY PREPARATIONS I NEED TO FOLLOW BEFORE MY SCAN?
In order to achieve the highest accuracy, it is compulsory to follow our standardised protocols. These are always emailed after booking your appointment.
HOW LONG WILL MY APPOINTMENT TAKE?
Your Thermocheck® appointment will take approximately 30 minutes with one of our female scan technicians. If you are concerned about your breast health and prefer to discuss your Thermocheck® results on the same day straight after your scan with a breast health specialist, we offer an option of booking a scan and consultation with Dr Eccles, the founder of Thermocheck® on the same day.
AT WHAT AGE SHOULD I START TO HAVE BREAST THERMOGRAPHY?
At The Natural Doctor®, given the incidence of breast cancer nowadays in younger women, we recommend a thermography screen for women of all ages from 20 onwards; especially so if there is a family history of breast cancer.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I HAVE A BREAST THERMOGRAPHY SCAN?
We recommend a regular annual Breast Thermogram much like a regular dental check-up. Patients with abnormal scans or with breast cancer history will be recommended more regular checkups.