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FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

Is Breast Thermography Safe?

Yes, it is FDA approved in the United States and has been used there and in Europe for over twenty years. Thermography is a non-invasive test. This means that nothing is sent into your body. It simply is creating an image of your breasts by measuring your heat. There is no contact of any kind, nor is there any pain or radiation.

Can thermography diagnose breast cancer?

No. Thermography, like mammography is a screening tool. Thermography identifies abnormal physiological changes in your breasts that may be cancerous. Mammography, a type of x-ray, identifies certain structures in the breast that can potentially be cancer. With both Mammography and Thermography, definitive diagnosis is done by other procedures such as a biopsy or lumpectomy. Many of our patients come in after an abnormal “lets watch this area” mammography, and correlate the area to be watched with a thermographic image of the same area. If the thermography shows an issue in the same area, the patient will have more information with which to make an informed decision.

Is Breast Thermography covered by OHIP?

No. OHIP does not cover the cost of Thermography.

Have any studies been done regarding the accuracy of Thermography?

Yes, hundreds of studies have been written up in medical journals.
For further information, please go to: http://www.iact-org.org/articles/articles-review-btherm.html

Do I need a referral from my family physician?

No, a referral is not necessary

How long does it take?

The scan, including the time to acclimate to the room will take 20 to 30 minutes. The follow-up consultation at a later date will take about 20 minutes

How often will I need a re-scan?

This depends on the results of your initial scan. With no unusual changes noted and depending on your age, we will recommend re-scanning annually or every 2 years. If your scan shows changes, depending on the level of risk, you will be asked to have a re-scan sooner.

I have breast implants – is thermography safe?

Yes. Breast implants do not interfere with thermography. Breast Thermography is painless and safe, using no radiation or compression. It can be used effectively and safely for all women including pregnant or nursing women, women with dense breast tissue, and women with breast implants.

Why do we plunge our hands into cold water during the scan?

You will be asked to plunge your hands into ice water for 60 seconds during the exam. This is known as a stress test - the shock of the cold water will put your body into a "fright and flight" response. Normal blood vessels will contract and cool down, blood vessels feeding abnormal cells will not.
The technician will then repeat the process of taking the images for a before and after view.

Does Thermography replace Mammography?

No, we recommend that thermography be used together with mammography for the most comprehensive screening and the earliest possible detection.

 
 

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