By Dr. Mercola
Breast cancer is the leading cause of death among American women between the age of 40-55, and the high prevalence has spawned a very lucrative industry; from mammography and other dangerous or invasive testing methods, to “preventive” double mastectomies and cancer drugs.Much effort is placed on trying to detect cancer at an earlier stage. Unfortunately, the conventional recommendation to get regular mammograms has shown to be more harmful than helpful, as research shows ten times as many women are harmed in some way compared to those whose lives are spared by annual mammograms.
Breast Thermography – A Physiological Test to Help You Monitor Your Breast Health
Gaea Powell is a Board Certified Medical Thermographer and film maker with a passion for educating women about breast cancer screening and prevention. She previously served as Chief of Staff for Arnold Schwarzenegger prior to him becoming governor of California, and she also spent a number of years working in the film industry.Gaea lost her mother to breast cancer in 1991. Her mother was only 49. Losing her mother, and being told she was now at high risk of getting breast cancer herself, led her to Breast Thermography—first as a patient, and then as a practitioner.Thermographic breast screening is brilliantly simple and completely harmless. It’s as safe as having your photograph taken. It measures the infrared heat emitted by your body and translates this information into thermal images. Thermography does not require mechanical compression or ionizing radiation, and can detect signs of physiological changes due to inflammation and/or increased tumor related blood flow approximately 8-10 years before mammography or a physical exam can detect a mass.“[O]nce my mom passed away, my doctor was basically trying to scare me to death, letting me know I was at high risk and needed to have mammograms early,but I was determined to help myself prevent breast cancer in the first place,” says Gaea.“I did a lot of research at that time… almost 20 years ago. What I realized is that a mammogram would just let me know Ialready had cancer. I was also concerned about the repeated radiation year after year, and then the compression [of the breast tissue]…Luckily, in 1995, I discovered thermography.Thermography is a physiological test, so it allows you to look for physiological changes at an early stage. As we know, when you go to the doctor’s office, the first thing they want you to do is be weighed, have your blood pressure taken and have your temperature taken. Those are physiological tests that can be monitored for stability over time. It’s the same type of process. Every single person has their own unique thermal vascular roadmap, and thermography allows us to watch that roadmap over time.That was just a much better path for me. I wanted to be able to be empowered and be alerted to physiological changes, so I could try to make changes in an effort to help myself prevent disease,” Gaea explains.
From a Career in Film, to being a Champion for Women’s Health…
In 1995, Gaea was fortunate to locate a doctor in her local area who provided thermography screening. She began having annual Thermograms, just like others would have their annual mammograms. Each time, her doctor would review the results and recommend dietary changes or stress management, for example, to address any troublesome changes that were noticed.After utilizing thermography for 17 years, she ended up becoming a Board Certified Thermographer four years ago, after she moved to the central coast of California where thermography was rarely utilized. She knew firsthand how empowering her annual Thermograms had been to her and she wanted to make certain other women had access to thermography.“I couldn’t believe it, most women haven’t even heard of the technology. It was like an epiphany in my life. I changed careers. I got trained, did extensive research and became a specialist in medical thermography,” she says.She began offering thermography in the San Luis, Obispo area.“I wasn’t anti-mammography or pro anything else. I just wanted women to be informed that they had another option, which is available to women of all ages, and not restricted by breast density, implants, or reconstruction.Once I began imaging women, they started sharing these incredibly disturbing stories about their experiences with the more traditional option…Their stories were alarmingly common and similar.
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