Frequently Asked Questions on Thermography
Is Thermography an approved procedure?
Yes, digital infrared thermal imaging (also known as thermography) offered at Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME has been registered with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since 1982 as an adjunct to mammography. While it is not a replacement for mammograms, it offers an opportunity for earlier detection of breast disease than has been possible through breast self examination, doctor examination or mammography alone.
Is Thermography safe?
Yes, thermography is completely safe. At Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME we are proud to offer radiation free screening. Given that radiation exposure is a primary cause of cancer, this is a big deal. Also, there is no compression (squishing) of the delicate breast tissue. Chinese medicine states that trauma to the breast could be responsible for the development of breast disease. As a matter of fact, the imaging camera makes no contact with the body at all. We believe in the saying: “First, do no harm”.
Who takes the images?
The images are taken by a Certified Clinical Thermographer trained under the auspices of the American College of Clinical Thermology (ACCT). Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME has been a member in good standing of the ACCT since 2006.
Who reads the images?
The images are read and interpreted by medical doctors specially trained in the protocols of reading thermal scans. These doctors are highly regarded in their primary fields and are happy to contribute to healthcare and early detection through the interpretation of these scans. The doctors who read the scans produced at Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME are affiliated with Electronic Medical Interpretation.
What if I have dense breasts?
Thermal imaging is ideal for women with dense breasts. Because thermograhy is measuring the skin surface temperature, the density of a woman’s breasts does not interfere with a clear read. According to the Susan G. Komen website: “Mammograms of dense breasts are harder to read than mammograms of fatty breasts. Women with high breast density are 4-5 times more likely to get breast cancer than women with low breast density.” All the more reason to choose thermal imaging.
What is the cost of thermal imaging?
The cost of breast screening at Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME is $175. This fee includes interpretation by medical doctors specially trained in the protocols of reading and interpreting thermal scans. Other scanning available includes specific body regions such as: Head/Neck (thyroid, carotid arteries, sinuses, TMJ and dental issues will be assessed), Chest (includes heart and lung assessment), Abdomen (includes assessment of the internal organs). Any one of these regions will cost $175 to assess. Many people decide on an upper body scan which includes all the above-mentioned regions for only $275. Full body scanning, which includes images of the breasts, is also available for $495. Inner Image Health Screening of Falmouth, ME offers screening of any body region as well as Half Body and Full Body imaging.
Is Thermal Imaging a replacement for Mammograms?
Thermal Imaging and mammograms complement each other. While thermal imaging is not a replacement for mammography, it is capable of detecting subtle tissue changes the mammogram cannot detect that could indicate the beginnings of breast disease.
How often will I need a breast scan?
Three months is the average doubling time of cancer, so we recommend initially that two sets of scans be taken with a 3-month gap in between. Thermal imaging detects subtle changes in the condition of the breast, therefore the second scan is recommended to make sure there have been no changes within the 3 month time frame. Upon this short-term baseline being established, once annual screening is recommended. The good news is Inner Image Health Screening of Falmouth, ME will remind you when it’s time for your annual screening.
Do I need a doctor's referral to have a scan?
You do not need a referral from your doctor to have scanning at Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME. Most people refer themselves. We will happily send a copy of your report to both you and the doctor or caregiver of your choice. The report you receive is identical to the report your doctor receives.
What if I get abnormal results? What do I do?
As always, early detection is the key to a good outcome. Thermography is not diagnostic but identifies early risk factors. An abnormal result from a thermogram allows a person time for therapeutic life-style changes to be incorporated. At the very least, the condition can be closely monitored safely until conventional interventions need to be applied.
Will my insurance cover the cost of a scan?
Most insurance companies do not cover the procedure. Inner Image Health Screening in Falmouth, ME is committed to keeping this procedure affordable. Our policy is to receive payment at the time of service.
What if I have implants?
Thermal Imaging is completely safe and effective for women with implants. Thermal imaging makes no contact with the body, thereby preserving the integrity of the implants and the results are as reliable as the images of breasts without implants.