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Thermography is the use and study of thermograms (infrared images) for detecting and measuring variations of heat emitted from the service of the body. The image is produced by a highly sensitive, medical infrared camera that accurately maps temperature variation, which are then interpreted by Board Certified physicians known as thermologists. Thermography does not expose the body to radiation or involve any contact and is used to aid in the detection of inflammation, disease and cancer within the body. Thermography can also be utilized as a naturopathic screening, a proactive whole-body approach to wellness.
Thermography measures the infrared radiation (heat) which emits from the surface of the body. Areas of abnormality, pathology or disease within the body will be observed as either hot or cold depending on the metabolic activity. An ultra-sensitive thermal camera and a sophisticated computer are used to convert the infrared heat emitting from the surface of the skin into electrical impulses that are visualized in color, known as a thermogram.
The thermogram is then interpreted by a team of medical doctors known as thermologists who provide a detailed report of the findings. The technology of thermography has been utilized for decades and can detect physiological changes at an early stage.
Although thermography is best known for imaging and assessing breast health, it has a wide range of other applications due to it’s ability to view inflammation. Inflammation is a precursor to many diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and cancer. Whether looking at the lymphatic or cardiovascular systems or looking at specific areas of concern like the oral cavity or breasts, a thermogram views these as one system, the whole body. The thermographic images seen here depict oral inflammation and the connection to the lymphatic system.
A thermography screening assesses the health of the thyroid, oral cavity, breasts, abdomen and lower body as well as any other specific areas that may be of concern. Thermography is non-invasive and radiation free, which makes it a great option for routine health screenings. Traditional medical screenings such as X-rays, mammograms, ultrasounds, and MRIs focus on disease management, whereas thermography focuses on locating problem areas before they turn into disease. Thermography can provide the early detection necessary to implement preventive lifestyle changes with diet, exercise and stress management.
April Beaman, RDH, CTT
April was born and raised in Connecticut and is a wife and a mother of two boys. She is passionate about her and her family’s health and lifestyle choices. Together, they enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, foraging for wild food and relaxing at the beach.
April has been a health and wellness professional for over 15 years and has always been enthusiastic about the health of her patients. As a former holistic, biological dental hygienist, April’s focus was on educating her patients how lifestyle choices affect whole body health, beginning with the oral cavity. Furthermore, she believes that being proactive and learning early on where complications are developing will empower patients to make lifestyle and health changes long before actual signs and symptoms of disease occur.
April first realized the benefits of medical thermography through personal research regarding her own health. During that same time, two friends were diagnosed with breast cancer, both in their early 30’s. As you can imagine thermography now felt like a “calling” for her. April feels had these women been aware of the technology of breast thermography their breast cancer diagnosis and outcome would have been different.
April is now dedicated to educating women and men of all ages about the benefits of medical thermography relating to early disease and cancer detection. She has been invited to speak at women’s health and leadership events to discuss both breast health and medical thermography. Since most tumors take years to grow, the earliest indication of pathology is needed to allow for the earliest possible intervention and the least aggressive treatments.
April’s hope is that through the collaboration with partnering doctors, thermography will become an integral part of every medical practice for health screenings. She received her CTT certification from the Professional Academy of Clinical Thermology (PACT) and is affiliated with Breast Thermography International (BTI).