Alternative to Mammograms Boston MA

Think how many lives it could potentially save by alerting women to cancer early enough to do something about it. And it could go a long way toward reducing the number of needless biopsies performed as well.

Therese M Mulvey, MD
(617) 479-3550
10 Willard St
Quincy, MA
Business
Commonwealth Physicians Services Inc
Specialties
Oncology

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David Bent Smith
(617) 724-4000
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA
Specialty
Hematology

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Donald Paul Lawrence, MD
(617) 636-5146
750 Washington St # 245
Boston, MA
Specialties
Oncology (Cancer)
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: A Einstein Coll Of Med Of Yeshiva Univ, Bronx Ny 10461
Graduation Year: 1991

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Allan Kliman, MD
(617) 720-6400
125 Nashua St
Boston, MA
Specialties
Oncology (Cancer), Internal Medicine
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Male
Education
Medical School: Harvard Med Sch, Boston Ma 02115
Graduation Year: 1958
Hospital
Hospital: Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospi, Boston, Ma
Group Practice: Spaulding Rehab Hospital

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Verena Gobel
(617) 726-2737
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA
Specialty
Hematology / Oncology

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Nathan A Pennell
(617) 724-4000
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Hematology / Oncology

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David H Chui
(617) 414-5314
670 Albany St
Boston, MA
Specialty
Hematology

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S Donald Kaufman, MD
(617) 726-8689
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA
Specialties
Oncology (Cancer)
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Boston Univ Sch Of Med, Boston Ma 02118
Graduation Year: 1960

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Lawrence S Blaszkowsky, MD
(617) 724-4637
100 Blossom St
Boston, MA
Specialties
Oncology (Cancer)
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Suny-Hlth Sci Ctr At Syracuse, Coll Of Med, Syracuse Ny 13210
Graduation Year: 1990

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Wb Younger
(617) 726-8698
55 Fruit St
Boston, MA
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Hematology / Oncology

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An Alternative to Mammograms

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By Burton Goldberg

In response to the rising rate of breast cancer, women are constantly being reminded how important it is to get regular mammograms. But a mammogram is a screening tool with some real limitations.

It did not offer any advantage to women ages 50 to 59 who were being tested for cancer, according to a Canadian National Breast Screening Study conducted two years ago; the group getting a physical exam plus a mammogram had the same breast cancer death rates as the group getting an exam alone. It also carries a high rate of inaccuracy, both positive and negative. In other words, it sounds the alarm for cancer in up to 10 percent of women who don’t really have it, and doesn’t find it in 10 to 30 percent of women who actually do have it. And since a mammogram is essentially an X-ray of the breast, women are exposed to a small amount of radiation in the process of having one.

Perhaps we could live with these problems if mammography were the only option. But it isn’t. Another promising screening method is breast thermography, which relies on a heat-sensing infrared camera to scan for abnormalities. It’s noninvasive, it’s safe, and it has a high level of accuracy when used as a tool for ruling out cancer.

Here’s how it works: Most objects—including human skin—emit a certain amount of infrared light in proportion to their temperature. Thermography uses this light to map the surface temperature of the breast. That’s important because abnormal tissue growth can raise the temperature of the area of the breast it inhabits, and show up as a hot spot in a thermogram. With the use of thermography we can often detect cancer up to ten years in advance of when it would be picked up in a mammogram or clinical breast exam, according to the International Academy of Clinical Thermology.

And thermography appears to be better than mammography in determining whether a woman is cancer-free. In a four-year clinical trial published last year in the American Journal of Roentgenology, researchers used thermography on 769 patients who had just gotten suspicious mammogram results. Of the women identified by thermography as cancer-free, only 3 percent turned out to have cancer. (Results were confirmed by follow-up biopsies.) This is much better than the 10 to 30 percent rate for mammograms. The researchers concluded that infrared imaging would be a valuable adjunct to mammography in assessing the likelihood of cancer.

Think how many lives it could potentially save by alerting women to cancer early enough to do something about it. And it could go a long way toward reducing the number of needless biopsies performed as well. Each year in the United States more than a million are performed, and approximately 75 to 80 percent prove to be benign. Instead of using a biopsy to rule out some cancers, thermography could be used instead.

Thermography is also much less invasive than mammography because no tissue is exposed to X-rays. Nor does it involve any of ...

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