What is Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging (DITI) also known as Thermography?
Thermography is a clinical thermal imaging procedure for aiding in prevention and detection of various diseases and dysfunction throughout the body. This is done by using a highly sensitive infrared camera that measures heat radiating off the body. Thermography is a non-invasive, radiation free, painless screening to better understand your health. Thermography provides an overview of your current health status and detects future risk markers.
What can a thermography scan discover?
Thermography is a test of vascular physiology. It is a safe proactive screening tool and not a stand-alone diagnostic. Thermography detects very subtle physiologic changes that occur with breast disease, whether it’s abnormal blood flow, hormonal changes, unusual inflammation, dense/fibrocystic breast tissue, or vascular disease. A full body scan can show issues in breast disease, lymphatic congestion, gastrointestinal challenges, arthritis, TMJ, inflammation, thyroid dysfunction, immune function, dental and periodontal disease, hormonal imbalances, disc disease, myofascial irritation, carotid arteries, nerve function, organ dysfunction with the esophagus, liver, spleen, kidneys, uterus, ovaries, colon, bowels, neuropathy, and many more abnormal concerns.
What type of scans do you offer?
Established Patients and Annuals
Upper body screening
Whole body screening
Women's or Men's health check
Region of interest
Lower body screening
Does insurance cover this?
Whole Health Imaging does not bill insurance. We require payment at the time of service. Most insurance companies do not cover thermographic screening and consider it an out-of-pocket expense. We recommend checking with your individual insurance provider for a better understanding of your coverage. For those with financial difficulties, the United Breast Cancer Foundation may be able to provide financial support for a breast thermogram. We encourage you to contact them through their website www.ubcf.com.
Does thermography work
if I have implants?
Yes, this is great for someone who has implants. Since there is no compression, there is no risk of rupturing or causing harm to the implant. Thermography has the ability to check the integrity of the implant.
Will a thermographic scan tell me if I have cancer?
No, absolutely not. mammograms, thermograms, MRIs, ultrasounds, or any other imaging methods cannot diagnose cancer. These screening tools can only suggest the presence or absence of disease. The only way to diagnose cancer is through a biopsy and pathological analysis. While X-rays, ultrasound, and mammography show us the structure of the body, they miss such things as active inflammation and increased blood supply as found in many illnesses. A thermogram notes vascular and functional changes that occur when disease exists or is developing. A thermogram can detect areas of dysfunction in the body by imaging hot and cold areas. The reason this is so important, is that a temperature change is one of the first signs of disease. This is the reason that areas of dysfunction can show up so much earlier with a thermographic scan. However, when thermography, mammograms, ultrasounds, and clinical exams are used together, the best possible evaluation of breast health can be made.
Who performs the imaging?
A trained, female, specialist who has been certified as a clinical thermographer from the American College of Clinical Thermology. This qualification adheres to driving standards with an approved code of ethics and practice protocols that include quality control guidelines.
American College of Clinical Thermology
The American College of Clinical Thermology (ACCT) is one of the longest established, largest, and most trusted professional organizations dedicated to the advancement of thermology and thermography through education, research, innovation, and professional development. ACCT was founded to maintain the very highest of standards across the practice of thermography. https://thermologyonline.org
Are all thermography offices regulated by the same professional organization?
No, not all thermographers, cameras, and software are created equal. Therefore, it’s important to choose a qualified office.
Is thermal imaging FDA approved?
Yes, thermography is FDA approved as an adjunctive screening procedure. Whole Health Imaging uses the best equipment in the industry. We operate Medi-Therm equipment, which is the only equipment manufactured for healthcare use and is a F.D.A cleared technology.
Who reads the images
and writes the reports?
Whole Health Imaging is partnered with a professional interpretation service (EMI) who employs board certified practicing medical doctors to interpret a patient’s thermogram. This accredited professional organization makes up a wide variety of specialties including General Practice, Radiology, Emergency Medicine, Functional Medicine, OB/GYN, all of whom are board certified in thermology. These doctors have many years of experience and have programs in place for quality assurance and second opinions when necessary.
Is the scan painful?
No, there is no compression or discomfort with thermography. It is completely non-invasive and there is no contact with the body.
Is thermography safe?
Yes, there is no radiation exposure. Whole Health Imaging uses a highly sensitive infrared camera that records heat radiating from the body. There are no risks or contraindications.
Is thermography the same as mammography?
No, thermography and mammography are two completely different tests providing different information. Mammograms use X-ray to look at structure or anatomy. Mammograms are useful for detecting masses, established tumors, and calcifications. Thermograms look at heat patterns, inflammation, abnormal blood flow, and vascular changes in the breast tissue which can often be the first sign of disease. Thermographic imaging is aimed at screening for change over time to detect developing pathology and risk factors at an early stage. Breast thermography screening is a specialized physiological test designed to detect angiogenesis, nitric oxide, estrogen dominance, lymph abnormality, and inflammatory processes including inflammatory breast disease. Furthermore, thermography can show possible pathology development 8-10 years before those cells would double enough to produce a mass that a mammogram could detect. Combining thermography along with structural testing such as mammogram, ultrasound, or MRI will provide the highest accuracy.
What is your cancelation policy?
Please note that once you have booked an appointment with us it means that we have reserved time in our schedule exclusively for you. Please understand that appointment times are limited. If you cancel your appointment less than 24 hours before it is scheduled to take place, this will result in a cancellation fee equal to the cost of the booked service. Due to the distance that we often travel to provide service at our remote clinics, your advanced notice is greatly appreciated as it guarantees that we can properly plan our staffing, materials, and travel time. Please call (978-852-5569) or email WholeHealthImaging@gmail.com as soon as you know you will not be able to make your appointment.
Have clinical tests been done on thermal imaging?
Yes, over 800 peer- reviewed studies on breast thermography exist in the index Medicus literature. In this database, well over 300,000 women have been included as study participants. The numbers of participants in many studies are very large (10,000, 37,000, 60,000, 85,000) Some of these studies have followed patients for up to 12 years. These clinical trials have demonstrated that breast thermography detects the first signs of breast abnormalities up to 10 years before any other procedure can detect it. Significant augments the long-term survival rates of its recipients by as much as 61%. When used as part of a multimodal approach including (clinical examination, mammography, thermography) will detect 95% of early-stage cancers.
P. Haehnel, M.D., M. Gautherie, Ph.D. et al; Long-Term Assessment of Breast Cancer Risk by Thermal Imaging. In: Biomedical Thermology, 1980; 279-301
Why do I need to come back for another breast scan in three months?
It is critical to establish a breast baseline. Our standard of care requires an initial breast scan and a repeat scan in 3-4 months. These two studies will establish a breast baseline (if there are no changes). We need to make sure that your unique thermal patterns remain stable over time and understand what is normal for you. By comparing these two studies, we can determine if your breast physiology is stable and reliable to be used as your baseline before moving on to annual screening. This is used for comparisons for all future scans so that the most subtle breast tissue changes can be identified.
If thermography is so great why haven't I heard about it?
There are several layers to this question. The insurance industry sets the standards and even though (DITI) thermography is FDA registered as a medical screening tool it’s not considered the standard. Although many other countries utilize thermography as the gold standard in breast screening. Another reason is, unfortunately, many physicians either are unaware of the advances and reliability of clinical thermography or have out to date information as to its efficacy. For example, radiography and ultrasonography refer to anatomy. Thermography, however, is based on thermodynamics and thermokinetics which are unfamiliar to most physicians.
What type of equipment does Whole Health Imaging use?
Whole Health Imaging solely uses the Meditherm Med2000 system. Meditherm products are fully compliant with regulatory requirements. The IRIS 7.5 camera is a class 1 medical device that was designed and manufactured exclusively for medical application. The Meditherm FDA manufacturer registration number is 3006111110. The EC Conformity classification is, MDD Annex IX, Rule 12, Class 1. The only thermography system specifically designed and calibrated for optimal operation in the narrow temperature range of metabolic heat. Additionally, delivering maximum sensitivity, accuracy, stability, and a higher degree specificity for the applications that are used in general practice. Bottom line, it's the best and most advanced camera system for thermographic imaging.
What is the difference between Meditherm Med2000 and other infrared cameras?
The Camera used at Whole Health Imaging is a class 1, FDA cleared medical device with 510 (K) clearance. Most other thermal scanners (FPA technologies) used in other clinics are industrial devices that have been modified for clinical use. Our cameras are exclusively designed for medical use and clinical application and are not used in any other industry. Whole Health Imaging operates a camera that is specifically calibrated to read body temperatures to within 1/100 of a degree and records over 80,000 temperatures with each image. The 8-degree range allows for the smallest subtleties to be detected. Every temperature measurement (pixel) is calibrated against an internal reference source as the temperature is taken. It is designed to control thermal drift and does not have the infrared blocking optical lens of an industrial camera.