If having thermography imaging done it is a medical procedure in combination with other breast examination testing. This testing is non-invasive and completely painless without any form of radiation unlike some other types of testing. Because the infrared testing does not use radiation it is safe for women who are either pregnant or nursing and who have had surgical procedures like biopsies, implants or breast reductions. The testing can also be done during the menstrual cycle and this will have no effect on the results of the test. This is a thorough process that can provide early detection and monitor the progress of breast cancer. Though unlike some other testing there is a more involved procedure and pre-examination requirements.
The first step will be the intake form that will include previous testing, pain diagrams, surgeries, and daily life questions to provide pertinent information for the testing assessment.
The Testing Procedure
When going for thermography testing the procedure begins with removing clothing from the waist up and then a visual inspection of the breasts. The person undergoing the test will be left for about 15 minutes for the breast and body skin temperature to reach. The temperature of this room that is temperature controlled. Then the person having this test will be positioned in front of the machine that will do the infrared imaging with the arms positioned over the head. The imaging will be done on the surfaces of the breasts, the upper chest, and underarms.
Pre-Examination Infrared Imaging Instructions
Before having thermography imaging testing done there are instructions that must be adhered to for the results to be accurate. Some are common sense such as not using cream, oil, lotions or powders and not shaving on the day of the exam. Then there are other pre-testing rules that must be followed for good test results.
- This testing should not take place for at least 4 weeks after a biopsy of the breast, no matter whether it is a fine needle or core biopsy.
- After a lumpectomy or surgical biopsy thermogram testing should not be done for at least 8 weeks.
- Any medical procedures done within the past 12 weeks should be made known prior to scheduling the thermography testing.
- Sunbathing breasts should not be done for at least 5 days before testing is done.
- Chiropractic, TENS, electronic muscle stimulation and physical therapy should not be done for at least 24 hours prior to the testing.
- Steam rooms and saunas should not be used at least 24 hours prior to testing.
- Mothers that nurse should not nurse at least an hour prior to the infrared testing.
- Bathing should not be done prior to the test and showering should not be done within an hour of the test.
Following Instructions is essential to ensure the infrared testing has accurate results. Since any of the items listed that should not be done could change the test results giving either a false reading or a negative reading.