New cancer treatment platform unveiled
Dubai, January 28, 2009
Varian Medical Systems and BrainLAB inaugurated its new outpatient high-precision radiosurgery platform Novalis Txä with Adaptive Gating at the 2009 Arab Health Exhibition.
The new Adaptive Gating feature provides non-surgical alternatives to treat lung cancers.
Radiosurgery has become a treatment standard for many brain tumors as an alternative to surgery, in hospitals in the Midddle East and around the world. The benefits for patients include reduced radiation to the surrounding tissue promising fewer side effects and fewer treatment sessions – often one single appointment is sufficient, said an official spokesman.
Lung tumors move with each breath, presenting a new challenge to clinicians. Today, radiosurgery techniques formerly used only for the brain can be applied to treat tumors in the body.
With Adaptive Gating on the Novalis Txä radiosurgery platform, clinicians can treat lung tumors with high doses. The treatment beam is only turned on when the tumor is in the exact target position needed for treatment.
This significantly reduces the radiation toxicity to the surrounding healthy tissue. Novalis Tx has integrated volumetric and real-time imaging capabilities that enable clinicians to detect changes in size and position that have occurred between treatment sessions.
Clinicians also utilise the latest techniques in treatment planning, the Monte Carlo algorithm, to precisely calculate how radiation is distributed across the in-homogenous tissues in the chest cavity in order to get the best treatment outcomes.
Chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at the Klinikum Frankfurt (Oder), Academic Teaching Hospital, Charité-Universitätsmedizin-Berlin, Dr Reinhard Wurm is one of the worldwide renowned experts in radiation treatment of lung tumors and metastases.
With over 20 years of clinical experience in radiosurgery, he has treated more than 5,000 patients from allover the world. Further developing the treatment techniques, he has devoted more than six years to the highly precise treatment of body tumors (“Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy” – SBRT).
“The latest improvements allow us to treat inoperable primary lung cancers as well as metastases originating from other parts of the body with very high precision”, said Dr Wurm.
“We can also offer a combined treatment to patients. This means that surgery is used to remove the parts of the tumor that can easily be reached and the remaining tumor tissue is treated with radiosurgery. This radiosurgery treatment can be done on an outpatient basis, allowing the patient to return home on the same day. Furthermore, chemotherapy can be initiated at the same time to improve treatment response by radio-sensitization and to lose no time to counteract development of distant metastases.”
In the Middle East, cancer is a leading cause of death along with cardiovascular disease and accidents; lung cancer in specific is one of the five most common cancers among men in this region .
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancers worldwide, accounting for 1.4 million deaths each year . While other environmental risk factors exist, smoking has been identified as a main risk factor for developing lung cancer.
This cancer often develops roughly 30 years from the onset of smoking. Although the overall lung cancer incidence rate in the Middle East region is currently lower than in other regions of the world, the prevalence of smokers has been increasing and experts are expecting a lung cancer epidemic in the coming decades.
Despite the advancements in diagnosis and treatment of many cancers over the past decades, little progress has been made in changing patient outcomes for those diagnosed with lung cancer.
The overall five-year survival rate for people diagnosed with lung cancer is lower than 15 percent. Survival rates vary widely, depending on the st