Why Thermography Shouldn’t Replace Your Mammography

Why Thermography Shouldn’t Replace Your Mammography

Testing your body solely with this device isn’t approved by the FDA.

Concerned about breast cancer? You need to be checked properly for it. And this means getting a mammogram, the experts say.

The FDA recently posted a news release on its website highlighting the dangers of using alternative methods to diagnose serious diseases. The release cited a warning letter the administration sent out to a thermal imaging clinic located in La Mesa, California. The clinic, called Total Thermal Imaging Inc. is owned by a woman named Linda Hayes. She has been marketing and distributing a device that uses an infrared camera to photograph your blood flow. The results are then being used to diagnose serious conditions like breast cancer.

It’s all called ‘thermography’, and it does have a legitimate use, but just not in this way. As a noninvasive tool, the device produces images that can show the patterns of heat and blood flow on or near the surface of your body.

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Thermography is commonly used as an add-on tool when detecting serious conditions. 

So, what did Hayes do wrong? Her company was marketing the device as something you could use on its own. She was encouraging patients to screen themselves for breast cancer and other illnesses. These included things like heart disease, deep vein thrombosis and pre-stroke. But the results weren’t reliable.  

“There is no valid scientific data to show that thermographic devices, when used on their own or with another diagnostic test, are an effective screening tool for any medical condition,” the FDA stated. “The agency stresses that mammography is the only screening method proven to reduce deaths from breast cancer through early detection,” it added.  

How should you be tested for breast cancer? Experts advise that women aged 45 to 54 get a mammogram each year. Those 55 and over should ideally be tested every 1 to 2 years.  For more information, click here. 

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