A newer, safer way to screen for breast cancer comes to Kaua‘i this weekend

One out of eight American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes — the statistic is disturbingly high and screening is the best way to save a life, whether it be your own, your mothers’, sisters’, daughters’ or friends’.

Dr.Nancy Gardner of Optimum Health Clinic in California is coming to Kaua‘i beginning today to hold a workshop and screenings that are invaluable for women’s health.

Due to the high rate of breast cancer, Gardner has made a commitment to educate women about preventing breast cancer worldwide.

She taught at the U.C. Berkeley campus on Preventive Health Care for Women.

She is also CEO of the California Preventive Medicine Foundation, and heads its research department in finding nutritional supplements that can reverse early signs of breast disease.

“Women between the ages of 40 and 69 have a 30 percent chance of a false-positive screening mammogram over a 10-year period. False-positives in mammograms lead to additional testing, increased cost and unnecessary anxiety and 85 percent of results of further testing are negative. The rates of false-positive screening tests are higher for younger women because fewer of their breast masses are malignant,” reports The New England Journal of Medicine.

According to the National Cancer Institute, one in five cancers may be missed by mammography.

False-negatives occur more often in younger women than in older women because the tissue of younger women is more dense.

Five Good Reasons to Choose Thermography for Breast Cancer Screening: 

1. Higher Rate of Accuracy (10% for false positive and negative)

2. No exposure to ionizing radiation

3. No painful compression

4. For those with breast augmentation, no chance of ruptured implants

5. Risk of radiation from mammograms is higher in young women

Dr.Gardner of the Optimum Health Clinic in San Rafael, California, states that thermography has been used successfully for breast cancer screening for more than 30 years.

It offers women a safe, non-radioactive alternative to mammograms.

FDA-approved thermography is clearly a better option for general screening using mammograms as a back-up procedure (mammograms or ultrasound can detect the location of a tumor). 

The cost for thermography is generally between $195 and $225 and is covered by most major insurance companies, but Gardner is offering a discounted rate for Kaua‘i residents at $175.

Register a friend or relative by phone and get $10 off for each person.

What is thermography?

Thermography is the use of an infrared imaging and measurement camera to produce temperature calibrated infrared or heat pictures.

Based on these thermal images, accurate temperature measurements can be made to detect the smallest temperature differences.

Three infrared images are taken before and after the patient places her hands in cold water for one minute.

This causes a constriction in the vascular system helping to distinguish suspicious hot areas that are just an inflammation from hot areas indicating neo-angiogenesis (the blood supply that feeds a tumor).

Benign tumors, such as fiber-adenoma cyst, show up cold and are easily distinguished from the blood supply that feeds a cancerous tumor, which shows up as hot.

This avoids the unnecessary biopsy ordered with mammograms from suspicious fiber adenoma cysts.

Infrared cameras can see through soft tissue and muscles but not behind the chest cavity or abdominal wall.

Thermography can detect changes in the breast up to 10 years before a tumor is detected by skilled palpation or mammograms (it can take years before a cancer is large enough (1 cm) to be detected by the machine, leaving early diagnosis outruled).

Dr. Gardner is certified by the American Board of Thermography and has been practicing thermography for more than 15 years.

She travels throughout California and Hawai‘i offering free presentations on thermography for early breast cancer screening, lowering risk factors for breast cancer and how to do your own breast exams.

• Keya Keita, lifestyle writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 257) or kkeita@kauaipubco.com

Get screened this weekend

Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. at The Aloha Beach Resort in Wailua.

If you would like more information on Dr. Gardner or thermography, and to schedule an appointment call 866-766-2468.


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