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Thermography FAQs

  What causes Cancer? Cancer results from the accumulation of gene mutations. Before I present strategies to reduce your risk you must know how cancer is formed. An article in the New England Journal of Medicine sums it up in one sentence. “Cancer results from the accumulation of mutations in genes that regulate cellular proliferation.” This accumulation of mutations happens over time and this is why, as every year goes by we become more likely to develop cancer. A sound prevention strategy must address gene mutations. Fortunately, there are a number of steps we can take. How does my doctor feel about breast thermography? Most medical professionals know little of this technology. Scientific knowledge has been doubling every three and half years since 1995 – the first year we learned more than in all previous history. Once out of medical school much of a doctor’s continuing education is sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry. It’s likely they haven’t read one of the 800 peer reviewed journal articles on breast thermography. Most of the research has taken place in Canada and France, where this technology is more mainstream. There are now over 300,000 women that have been part of the research on breast thermography. A particularly good article by Len Saputo, MD titled Beyond Mammography was published in 2004 in the Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients. I suggest making a copy for your doctor and educating him or her on the benefits of this life saving technology. Can you give me more details on the examination? Click Here to view our process. Strict protocols are necessary to obtain the most accurate information possible from these complex images. A number of variables can influence the thermograms. So, we insist that if you are pre-menopausal you must not be menstruating, ovulating, or pregnant. No smoking for at least two hours prior to the test. No caffeine, coffee, tea, energy drinks, or colas for 24 hours prior to the test. No sunburn, no massaging the breasts, and if you’re ill with a fever you’ll need to reschedule. During the examination the patient disrobes from the waist up, sits in a specially modified chair that elevates the arms away from the body, or stands with her hands behind her neck. She equilibrates to room temperature between 68 and 72 degrees. My specially trained assistant then takes a five view series of images using a sophisticated infrared camera. Then the images are analyzed using a computer based interpretive service, that is based on the gold standard of interpretation developed by Michel Gautherie PhD, Head of the Thermobiological Department at the Louis Pasteur University of Medicine, Strasbourg, France. When is the best time of the month to have a breast thermography examination? We want to avoid days 6 through 13 of your monthly cycle. How does thermography compare to mammography? Understand that these are two very different tests. Thermography is a physiological test and mammography is an anatomical test. For many years mammography has been the state of the art screening test for breast cancer. That said, there is much debate over its usefulness in women under the age of 50. Mammograms require radiating the breast, and cumulative x-rays are an additional breast cancer risk factor due to the genetic damage created by x-rays. Overall mammography has an accuracy of only 70% to detect cancer. The other side of that coin is the number of false positives, meaning something was found that looked like cancer but on biopsy turned out not to be. Only one in six positives is found to be cancerous, an 89% false positive rate. Plus, most breast cancers are so slow growing they don’t show up in a mammogram for nearly 8 years on average, time enough for the cancer to spread. Thermography’s track record, on the other hand has an impressive accuracy and sensitivity record in the 90% and above range. Used with mammography a 98% sensitivity in diagnosing breast cancer was achieved. The American Journal of Radiology, 1998 stated that thermography had 99% sensitivity in identifying breast cancer. So a negative Thermogram can give women great confidence they don’t have breast cancer. I don’t mean to be cynical, but mammography is big business, how big? And do you think that has anything to do with thermograpy being underutilized in the U.S.? Mammography is a three to four billion dollar a year industry. As to the second part of your question, it would require me to speculate and I’d prefer to stick with what I can document in the scientific literature. I’ve read I have a one in eight risk of developing breast cancer in my lifetime. Are there statistics that break it down by the year or decade?
  • By age 25 a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer is 1 in 19,608
  • By 30 – 1 in 2,525
  • By 35 – 1 in 622
  • By 40 – 1 in 217
  • By 45 – 1 in 93
  • By 50 – 1 in 50
  • By 60 – 1 in 33
  • By 65 – 1 in 24
  • By 75 – 1 in 11
  • Lifetime – 1 in 8
Regarding prevention – The National Cancer Institute & the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) websites say you can only reduce your risk somewhat by not drinking alcohol, maintaining ideal body weight and exercising regularly. Why don’t they mention strategies presented in your OCBreastWellness website, like the benefits of taking vitamin D? Great question! As you know I agree with the recommendations they do make but they don’t go far enough. A scientific, peer reviewed, double blind, placebo controlled four year study was published in June 2007 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition unequivocally stated vitamin D with calcium lowered the risk of any cancer by 60%, and other studies have shown the effectiveness to be even higher. Are there any side effects to taking vitamin D with calcium to prevent cancer? I’ve heard vitamin D can be toxic. There are both good and bad side effects. Vitamin D is essential for the assimilation of calcium into your bones. You’ve got to have it to prevent osteoporosis. Another positive side effect is its good for the immune system. Vitamin D in very large doses can become toxic. One study I read mentioned 30,000 IU’s daily for months before toxic levels were reached. I recommend supplementing with 5,000 IU’s a day and get your blood levels of vitamin D checked. Ask your doctor for the results. The normal range has recently been changed to 32-100 ng. Not all of us absorb vitamin D efficiently and like me you may need a special form of vitamin D to increase your levels to an optimal range. Where can I buy a quality vitamin D product for the best price? This is one of the cheapest of all supplements. You can go to any health food store and buy vitamin D, but I prefer to buy over the Internet. I’m a huge fan of Life Extension Foundation, www.LEF.ORG they sell all sorts of supplements including vitamin D. You can absolutely count on them for a quality product. Life Extension is a non- profit organization that uses the profits to fund anti-aging research. They sell to members a 250 count /1000IU vitamin D for $8.44 (cheaper if you buy four). If you need to save a buck, you can buy a 200 count vitamin D 1000IU per capsule for $5.99 from They claim to have quality products and do in house testing on all their products. I have no reason not to believe them, but I haven’t done any independent testing on either company’s products. How much vitamin D should I be taking? Some people need only a 1000 IU’s of vitamin D to obtain optimal levels – others may need 5,000 and others 10,000. Only a blood test will determine if you are taking the appropriate dose for your body type. What’s the best test for checking the level of vitamin D in my system? The best test is “25(OH) D”, also called “25-hydroxyvitamin D”. Make sure this test is requested specifically. What are EMF’s and do they cause cancer? EMF’s are electromagnetic fields, sometimes referred to as dirty electricity. They do cause cancer and host of other problems. Robert O. Becker, MD author of Cross Currents and The Body Electric stated “the greatest polluting element in the earth’s environment is the proliferation of electromagnetic fields. I consider that to be far greater on a global scale than global warming”. We are all surrounded by these fields and about half of us have some symptoms and for some it’s cancer. For me it was high blood sugar. By removing these dangerous frequencies with Graham/Stetzer filters my blood sugar levels returned to normal within 3 days. There are excellent websites on the subject. and are worth visiting. I highly recommend the book by Donna Fisher called Dirty Electricity and Electromagnetic Radiation.
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