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Natural Awakenings Fairfield Cty/Housatonic Valley, CT

Misperceptions About Breast Cancer and Early Detection

May 05, 2015 11:37PM ● By Kenneth Hoffman

Research confirms that the best way to prevent cancer is early detection. According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the leading cause of death in women between the ages of 40 and 44. The risk of breast cancer at age 25 is less than one in 19,000; by age 35, the number is one in 217. Yet the statistic people are most familiar with is that one in eight women will eventually develop breast cancer.

Recently, the National Cancer Institute statisticians and concerned organizations such as the American College of Physicians have recognized some of the risks and limitations of mammograms. Mammograms do save lives as many more women are getting screened with mammograms. However, deaths from breast cancer have not decreased appreciably over the last 40 years. It would be more beneficial to find and eliminate any risks before they become diseases. While medical infrared thermal imaging is not a replacement for a mammogram, it is a recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an adjunct screening tool for breast cancer prevention. If you are a woman over the age of 30, you should consider this harmless technology as part of your annual disease prevention routine.

Medical infrared thermography is a tool that could detect early changes in the breast that could lead to cancer. If these risks are found early, those potential issues may be reversed by changing your diet, removing toxins and naturally balancing your hormones.

Women have a choice to add a thermogram as an additional screening tool for breast cancer. The following information and research may be helpful when speaking with your doctor:

• In 1982, the FDA approved breast thermography as an adjunct diagnostic breast cancer screening procedure.

• More than 300,000 women have been included as study participants in extensive research studies conducted since the late 1950s. Some of these large studies have followed participants up to 12 years.

Strict, standardized interpretation protocols have been established for 15 years to remedy problems with early research.

When considering the early detection of breast cancer, it is also important to look at some common misconceptions about the disease and its screenings.

Breast Cancer is a genetic disease

Less than 3 percent of all breast cancers are genetic. The higher risks are related diet, lifestyle, illness, hormone issues, stress and environmental toxins.

Breast cancer is NOT preventable

According to the American Cancer Society, 60 percent of all breast cancers are environmentally related. Since family history comprises such a low percentage of all cancers, there are numerous lifestyle and environmental links to the development of breast cancer. So it follows that in fact there are ways to lower your risk.

A normal mammogram means there is no cancer

While the mammogram is still valuable for detecting cancer, it is important to know that most breast cancers take eight to 10 years to develop. That means while you may have had years of negative mammograms, there may be microscopic cells growing that will need to get to a significant size before they will be picked up in your annual screening. With a thermography screening, suspicious changes could be detected much earlier.

Mammograms are harmless

Risks from mammography are rarely discussed. A recent 700-page report issued by the National Academy of Science confirms that cumulative exposure to radiation poses serious health risks. Another study published in 2004 showed that the radiation exposure risk from mammograms may be five times higher than previously thought. This means that annual mammogram screening between ages 40-50-years old may increase one’s risk by 5 percent per screening. Although mammograms save lives, it is also important to evaluate risk versus value.

Medical infrared thermography has no research behind it

For over 20 years, medical infrared thermography has been extensively studied with over 800 research citations supporting its use for detection. The results concur that as a screening tool, thermography has more than a 90 percent predictive value of future breast issues. One of the clearest studies tracked a group of 1527 women with initially normal mammograms and physical exams but abnormal thermograms for 12 years. The study was stopped after only five years because 60 percent of the women had already developed malignancies.

Medical infrared thermography should replace the mammogram

Mammography and thermography are two different tools. While mammography can evaluate structures in the breast, thermography evaluates the activity that may indicate risks. In some studies, the combination of both screening tools provided a 99 percent predictive indicator of breast disease. The FDA has recognized thermography as an adjunct to mammography. Diagnostically, mammography has its rightful place.

What to do if you have an abnormal thermogram

Heat patterns in a thermographic screening indicate that a woman is at risk for developing breast cancer in the future. By taking immediate action and applying an integrative approach to your medical care, positive changes can be seen in a matter of months. The most important thing to know is that thermograms give early warning signs that can be reversed naturally. The earlier the detection, the easier it is.

Kenneth Hoffman, DAc (RI), LAc, is the director of SOPHIA Natural Health Center in Brookfield and the radio host of The Natural Medicine Connection on 800AM WLAD. For more information, visit or call 203-740-9300.