Medical Infrared Imaging in Dogs with Mammary Tumors and Healthy Dogs

Abstract: Infrared thermography is a painless, noninvasive, non-ionizing diagnostic imaging exam used in human medicine as an auxiliary tool for breast cancer diagnosis in women.

Hypothesis/Objectives: Define thermographic mean temperatures of healthy mammary glands and compare these temperatures with those of mammary glands with tumors in dogs.

Animals: Fifty client-owned female dogs were evaluated, including 20 with histopathologically confirmed mammary tumor and 30 clinically healthy (control). Methods: A randomized study using infrared thermography analyzed each mammary gland of the animals from the control group and mammary glands with tumors from the tumor group, then the thermographic temperatures obtained were compared. Thermographic exam was performed in a temperature-controlled room with a cooled thermographic camera-Flir E-40 (Flir Systems(®)

Results: There was significantly a higher temperature in the caudal abdominal and inguinal mammary glands than the other glands in the healthy group (P < .05). Dogs with mammary tumors had significantly higher thermographic temperature compared with unaffected glands regardless of the tumor size and the location (P < .05).

Conclusions and Clinical Importance: The technique seems to be able to assess for the presence of neoplasia within the mammary tissue in bitches. Further investigation is necessary to determine the impact of this technique when adopted clinically.

Access the full study here.

Reference: M Pavelski , D M Silva , N C Leite, D A Junior, R S de Sousa, S D Guérios, P T Dornbusch. (2015) J Vet Intern Med. Nov-Dec; 29(6):1578-83

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