What to Expect at Your Appointment
Your initial appointment will take 30-40 minutes. When you arrive for your examination, you are asked to disrobe from the waist up and assume the position appropriate to the cooling method being utilized, and undergo equilibration (cooling) for a minimum of 15 minutes. Following the cooling procedure, the thermogram should be recorded in accordance with instructions and training.
Static and Fan cooling are two methods used in the cooling of patients. Fan cooling should be avoided in favor of the more acceptable static cooling, as fan cooling has increased potential for both asymmetrical cooling over-cooling.
1. Static Cooling: The patient disrobes from the waist up with her hands placed slightly above her hips and with the arms held away from the body. This position is maintained for ten minutes minimum with the patient either standing, or seated on a stool. Cooling for less than ten minutes invalidates the examination.
2. Fan Cooling: The patient disrobes from the waist up, stands five to six feet from a slowly rotating 20" area fan, and is then positioned such that the air-flow from the fan is directed at the sternum. The air flow direction is important to avoid asymmetric cooling. Cooling time using this method should be approximately two minutes; at, or before this time, the nipples usually become erect. Note that asymmetrical cooling yields thermal asymmetry, while over-cooling causes unstable thermal patterns on the breasts.
It is extremely important that the breasts are not touched during the cooling period by either the patient or examiner.
After 15 minutes, the technician will take a series of images including front, lateral, and oblique views..
You then will be asked to plunge your hands into ice water for 60 seconds. This is known as a stress test - the shock of the cold water will put your body into a "fight and flight" response. Normal blood vessels will contract and cool down while blood vessels feeding abnormal cells will not. The technician will then repeat the process of taking the images for a before and after view. The image taking itself only takes a couple of minutes.
Within approximately two weeks, you will receive an email and we will set up a telephone consultation to discuss results. Prior to your consultation we will email you your results and ask you to peruse them prior to our telephone appointment. You will actually see the images of your breast, learn about any issues or potential issues you may have, and be given advice on how to improve your health and help prevent breast disease. This follow-up appointment is complementary.