THERMOGRAPHY: FUNCTIONAL VS. STRUCTURAL IMAGING

Many people are familiar with structural imaging such as ultrasounds, X-rays and mammograms. However, they aren’t as familiar with the thermography option. Thermography is a totally non-invasive option for breast and body screenings. It has been FDA approved since 1984 and is used as an adjunct to mammography for breast screenings.  This rapidly developing technology is used to detect and locate thermal abnormalities characterized by an increase or decrease found at....

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THE SHERLOCK HOLMES OF HEALTHCARE: ULTRASOUNDS AND THERMOGRAPHY

Ultrasound imaging and thermography are important aspects in healthcare – they definitely cover more than babies. Many diagnoses and treatment plans stem from ultrasound and thermography procedures.  Ultrasounds are used to see internal body structures, such as tendons, muscles, joints, blood vessels and internal organs to find the source of a disease. Ultrasound works by using sound waves with frequencies that are higher than those audible to humans.

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SLEEP APNEA CAN BE A SYMPTOM OF SOMETHING MORE SERIOUS

Patient Choice Ultrasound and Thermography is now offering home sleep study kits. You may be asking yourself why a diagnostic imaging center is introducing sleep testing. The human body is kind of like the old children’s rhyme: “The knee bone is connected to the thigh bone.” There’s more of a correlation than one may think.

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THERMOGRAPHY: FUNCTIONAL VS. STRUCTURAL IMAGING

Many people are familiar with structural imaging such as ultrasounds, X-rays and mammograms. However, they aren’t as familiar with the thermography option. Thermography is a totally non-invasive option for breast and body screenings. It has been FDA approved since 1984 and is used as an adjunct to mammography for breast screenings.


This rapidly developing technology is used to detect and locate thermal abnormalities characterized by an increase or decrease found at the skin surface. The technique involves the detection of infrared radiation naturally emitted from the body that can be directly correlated with the temperature distribution of specific areas of the body. These exclusive patterns tell a story about what’s happening inside your body and particularly in the breast. Everyone has a unique thermal pattern that is exclusive to them; no two people are alike thermographically.


Scans can be used for specific screenings to see the function of the thyroid, intestinal health, dental health, inflammatory conditions, joints and muscles and the lymphatic and vascular systems. The breast screening monitors breast health and looks at their overall function. Thermography can indicate active fibrocystic disease, irregular vascular patterns, inflammation and even hormone imbalances. Thermography has achieved an average sensitivity and specificity of 90 percent. Because it’s non-invasive and no-contact, it makes it perfect

for those with breast implants or dense or painful breasts. The breast images are very individual; like your thumbprint is exclusive to you, your breast thermogram is exclusive to you and these patterns should never change. The images you see on your first visit should look the same way from that day on. If there is ever a change, it does not necessarily indicate cancer but can alert you to areas of concern and show your practitioner exactly where to look.


Since thermography is able to detect hormone level changes, it can be useful in assisting your physician in determining if you have a hormone imbalance such as estrogen dominance. Estrogen dominance increases the chances of certain types of cancer, including breast cancer. An estrogen-dominant hormone profile does not guarantee cancer, but studies have shown estrogen feeds cancer cells. Ten years ago my own sister, in her early 30s, showed signs of extreme estrogen dominance so it gave her a chance to work with her practitioner and reverse this hormonal imbalance and hopefully prevent her from ever developing cancer.


Studies have shown when a specific hyperthermia pattern in the T2 or T3 thoracic vertebrae regions at the base of the neck is present, this indicates an overactive autoimmune system. This information can be helpful in the diagnosis

of some autoimmune diseases, although not precisely which autoimmune dysfunction. Often, this will validate those suffering from fibromyalgia symptoms or chronic pain. Sadly, it can take years for those with autoimmune conditions to get a diagnosis, but because thermography can “see” inflammation, pain sources and the lymphatic system, many people are finding this screening helpful in guiding them and their practitioner in treatments.


The lymphatic system is another important area to screen. It moves fluid and infection-fighting white blood cells throughout the body and helps rid the body of toxins and waste. It includes tissues and organs and if it’s not flowing properly it can lead to disease, so it’s really important to know its functionality. So if a thermogram shows a congested lymph system, meaning it’s not functioning properly, it can give you a chance to correct this problem and prevent sickness or disease.


You do not need a referral or prescription from your practitioner to get a thermogram. It’s so important to me that women in our community know they have choices in their healthcare and where they go for their healthcare. All our images are interpreted by medical doctors who are board certified in thermography.

BECKY CHANDLER, ACCT.

With 10 years in the field of thermography, Becky Chandler, ACCT, Advanced Clinical Thermographer, is a partner at Patient Choice Ultrasound & Thermography located at 152 W. Tiverton Way in Lexington. PCU can be reached at 859-554-7360 or at www.patientchoiceultrasound.com.

more articles by Becky Chandler