Is Thermography a Valuable Tool in Diagnosis of Solitary Thyroid Nodules ?
One hundred and one cases of thyroid nodules were examined telethermographically in an attempt to differentiate malignant nodule from benign ones. Hyperthermic areas were delineated in 95.6% of malignant nodules, but not at all in nodules of adenoma. In the latter case, 66.7% of the nodules were hypothermic and 33.3% were normothermic. In adenomatous nodules, hyper-, normo-, and hypothermic areas were observed in 22.5%, 15% and 62.5%, respectively. Regarding the correlation between thermograghic patterns and 201T1C1, among nodule showing hyperthermic areas, 201T1C1 accumulation was seen in 85.4% of cancerous nodules and 88.9% of adenomatous nodules. An analysis of the thermal gradient and determination of the recovery time undertaken in an attempt to improve the accuracy of differentiation of malignant and benign nodules revealed no significant difference in the thermal gradient, but the recovery time in adenomatous nodules was shorter. Based on the adove results, we believe that thermography is likely to become a valuable tool in the diagnosis of thyroid nodules.