Breast Health and Your Lymphatic System

Listed in the table below are statistics related specifically to women’s health:

Disease or diagnosis Incidence Deaths
Heart disease 1:3 1:4
Heart disease or stroke 1:2 1:2
Breast cancer 1:8 1:30

Furthermore, many people are not aware that heart disease can be more deadly for women than men as 39% of women who have heart attacks die within a year, compared to 31% of men. During the first four years after a heart attack, the rate for a second heart attack is 20% for women and 15% for men. Heart disease actually kills more women than men.

Yet, breast cancer is the most feared disease of women.  

Breast cancer is the most common form of malignancy in women with approximately 200,000 cases diagnosed annually and approximately 40,000 women dying from this disease.
With more and more information about breast disease, many women are turning to therapies they can utilize to address breast health, focus on prevention and adopt a proactive approach for overall optimum breast heath.

1Client’s initial baseline breast scan was at Some Risk (C grade) and she was dissatisfied with her results.  The thermologist’s report commented on her lymph congestion and client left determined to make lifestyle changes that would decrease her congestion / reduce her risk factors and improve her T BI RADS score on her 3 month follow up scan.

The breast is composed of different layers: connective, adipose, and glandular tissue all overlying the pectoralis muscles of the chest wall.  These different layers of tissue along with fat give the breasts their size and shape.

Lymph nodes and lymph vessels combine to form the breast’s lymphatic system and work with a chain of lymph nodes that run up the center of the breast bone called the mammary chain and all drain into the lymph nodes in the armpit (axillary) region.

2Client’s 3 month follow up scan showed decrease in inflammation as well as decreased lymphatic congestion.  Client chose to eat a anti-inflammatory diet (Mediterranean diet), gave up coffee, tea and other drinks and opted to drink more water.  Client also experienced improvements in her sleeping patterns and felt much more alert throughout her day. T BI RADS score improved to a B grade (Low Risk).

A well functioning lymphatic system is vital to good health as it is the “garbage disposal” for cellular waste, clearing the area of infection, bacteria, metabolic waste and any other stagnation.  Many women will ask about the inflammation in their armpits seen on their breast scans and a short discussion about the lymphatic system will ensue.

The protective nature of our lymphatic system works to halt the formation of unhealthy tissue build up, which can steadily progress to tissue damage (caused by inflammation) and disease.  With close to 500 lymph nodes in the neck, chest, breast and axillary areas, it is imperative that we work to maintain a free-flowing and well functioning lymphatic system in order to maintain or improve our breast health and reduce our risks for breast diseases.  

3Client’s annual imaging showed marked improvements throughout both breasts and axillary regions.  Client continues to utilize healthy lifestyle choices to maintain her now Low Risk / Within Normal Limits T BI RADS score (A/B grade).

Keep in mind the other factors besides lymphatic congestion that can cause breast and axillary region inflammation:  stress, poor diet, hormonal imbalance, lack of proper breathing (shallow breathing), lack of movement/exercise, etc. 

While current research is inconclusive, there are plenty of reports linking aluminum-based antiperspirants and parabens (ethyl-, methyl-, propyl-) with the growth of breast cancer cells.

As more women move towards prevention, utilizing thermography to monitor stability and watch for worrisome changes, other modalities are incorporated to remove lymph congestion including essential oils in the breast and axillary regions, lymphatic massage, rebounding (mini-trampoline), dry skin brushing, yoga and proper breathing techniques (diaphragmatic breathing – belly breathing).  Of course, healthy eating and regular body work should be utilized, as well.
A focus on breast health in the written reports is important and many clients quickly scroll down to the T BI RADS score to see if there is anything to “worry about.”   But, please keep in mind that cardiac health is also evaluated thermographically with each breast scan.  




This 48 y/o client was in for her routine annual breast scan and the interpreting MD states: Hypothermia (cool blue left side) at the posterior torso on the left (best seen on the lateral image) is consistent with cardiac dysfunction. This is a new finding. In the context of the history of hypertension, provocative testing such as exercise stress should be considered.”
We encourage women to make choices for their health based on their understanding of the assessment tool used.  It is imperative that everyone understands that thermography is not the definitive tool in assessing ALL aspects of health.  It is simply another technology that we can use to help pick up a “blip on the radar screen” that can then be followed closely to either have further testing or employ a strategy of “watchful waiting.”

What is nice to know is that during your breast health assessment scan (thermal imaging), your cardiac health is also evaluated and reported on.

All thermal reports with suspicious findings will state that further testing should be considered if clinical symptoms are present.   Please be sure to share these findings with your healthcare practitioners.

Both Brenda and I are well connected to practitioners in our areas that can offer their services to address your breast thermogram findings.  Please ask us if you have questions or would like us to connect you to a particular practitioner.

Yours in prevention,

Lynda and Brenda Witt

NOTE:  The client in the first 3 images was age 72 when she first started with thermography and is now age 77.  She maintains her healthy lifestyle choices as well as her optimum T BI RADS score!