New High-Precision Image-Guided Radiotherapy and Radiosurgery for Cancer Treatment
May 12 2011 Read 1308 Times
Exempla Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver is among the first medical centres in the world - and the first in Colorado - to commence treating cancer patients using the new TrueBeam™ system for image-guided radiotherapy and radiosurgery, a revolutionary new technology platform designed to target a moving tumour with unprecedented speed and accuracy. TrueBeam, which is made by Varian Medical Systems, delivers many forms of advanced treatments, including image-guided radiotherapy (IGRT), intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), RapidArc® radiotherapy and Gated RapidArc.
"Each of these approaches is appropriate for a certain type of clinical challenge," said Mark Chidel, MD, Medical Director for Radiation Oncology at Exempla Saint Joseph Hospital. "With this system, we have many more options for choosing the optimal approach for each of our patients, including those with challenging cancers of the lung, breast, abdomen, or head and neck."
Prostate cancer patients were the first to receive treatment at ESJH with the new TrueBeam system. "Treating the prostate is very complicated, especially when you need to cover the lymph nodes," said Dr Chidel. "It lies very close to sensitive organs such as the bladder, rectum, and base of the penis. The image guidance and beam shaping capabilities of the TrueBeam system allow us to minimise radiation to these organs while still giving a high dose to the prostate."
High quality 3-D images, produced using the system’s built-in imager, are used to fine-tune the patient’s position prior to every treatment. "These images are accurate within millimeters, which is vitally important when you consider that the prostate is a mobile organ and people do not necessarily lie down in the same exact position day to day over a multi-week course of treatment," said Dr Chidel. "Imaging is an essential part of modern-day, targeted radiotherapy, and this system allows us to minimise the X-ray dose we use to generate the images.
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