Evaluation of thermography differentiated in breast tissue as potential technique to assist cancer detection


C.I. Guerrero-Robles, L.M. Lozano-Trenado, M.C. Uscanga-Carmona, A.N. Ramírez-Vilchis, J.G. Silva-Escobedo, V. Sánchez-Monroy and C.A. González-Díaz



Several groups have proposed thermographic image processing for Breast Cancer (BC) detection. Angiogenesis and vascularization of menstrual cycle dependent, as well as age and Body Mass Index change the absolute temperature in the tissue surface without necessarily being associated with malignancy. We have proposed the Differentiated Tissue Thermography (DTT) in breast regarding its contralateral mirror in order to observe differences in temperature characteristics of malignancy. This study evaluates the possibility of using breast DTT as a potential technique to assist the detection of BC. We sampled 110 female volunteers between 40 and 60 years old segmented into two experimental groups: healthy group (n=90) and BC group (n=20), which were diagnosed by mammography and histopathology. Thermal images of both breasts were acquired with an infrared camera and the DTT was estimated relative to its contralateral breast in the same patient. A sensitivity and specificity analysis was developed and the DTT was compared with the radiological diagnosis by ROC curves with the histopathological report as reference. The DTT values showed distinguishable dynamic ranges ​​between malignant and healthy conditions. ROC analysis showed sensitivity and specificity values for DTT of 70% and 54% while for the radiological diagnosis was 70% and 96% respectively. DTT showed technical viability to assist BC detection.