Clinical Thermography: A Blend of Pink and Green Technology
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Pink ribbons will appear en masse on packages and advertising and it will be impossible to miss the message that you should get checked.
While getting checked with a mammogram could lead to early detection, many women feel like something is still missing from the conventional screening programs. Is an annual yes or no test really the best we can do? Isn’t there a program for prevention? How could we become more proactive about our breast health? In conjunction with the growing field of functional medicine, doctors and holistic practitioners who work to find our deficiencies teach us to eat better and help us live healthier lifestyles. Thermography provides information that could help us become ambassadors for our breasts.
Somebody needs to do a better job looking out for the girls.
While tests of structure provide a picture of the physical appearance of tissues, thermography (also known as thermal imaging) provides physiological clues to help determine how those tissues are acting. Physiology is the study of function and activity and it is a way to improved communication with the body. Tests of physiology help us to essentially see “the messages” the body is sending.
Thermography is a test of physiology that enables us to compare an individual’s thermal patterns to evaluate for symmetry, chronological changes and suspicious thermal activity. The Thermographer uses a thermal imaging camera and software to take and record images of the individual’s thermal patterns and then submits them for evaluation by a Thermologist, a doctor who specializes in reading those images. The Thermologist remarks on the patterns and assigns a risk category to help determine if more proactive measures might be a good idea. The goal of thermography testing is to help women and their care providers monitor breast health and evaluate potentially beneficial measures to improve health.
This October don’t just think pink, think green and pink.
The thermography test is painless, there is no contact and the equipment emits zero radiation. Zero rays – that’s pretty green. Thermography is sustainable for a number of reasons – including the fact that the technology doesn’t require massive equipment. It’s not even scary looking. And it uses the same amount of electricity as your personal computer. It is a people-friendly technology that could help you be more sustainable too.
There is, without a doubt, a psychological element to breast screening. Could we alleviate some of the anxiety over screening “with a positive or negative objective” by using companion tests to provide more information? Even if you are currently participating in a conventional screening program, using a test of physiology such as thermography could help you become a better breast ambassador and a more educated patient. And if you are averse to invasive procedures and have been avoiding screening, then annual thermal imaging could provide valuable information in lieu of skipping the check-up.
Don’t cut off communication with the girls, they need you.
Thermography is not just for breasts. It is also used for pain evaluation and non-invasive whole body information. It is an affordable test that offers individuals another way to see how their body is handling the often toxic load of day to day living. Thermography could offer early detection of DVTs, thyroid issues, nerve impingement, arthritic changes and a multitude of other physiological messages your body probably wishes you could better understand and respond to.
Jo Vaccarino, CCT, Founder of Be Well Thermal Imaging of SWFL, is a Certified Clinical Thermographer who made the permanent move to SWFL from Ohio a little over one year ago. She loves the weather and the people here and is happy finally to be a Floridian.