Linear accelerators interface with computers to create advanced, targeted radiation therapy treatments. The Cancer Institute recently installed the TrueBeam™ radiotherapy system, the latest advance in radiotherapy technology from Varian Medical Systems.
(Hear the benefits of the TrueBeam Radiotherapy system from Dr. Joseph Poen)
TrueBeam™ redefines radiotherapy as we know it. Faster to administer than conventional Radiotherapy, TrueBeam rotates around the patient to deliver powerful, specifically targeted beams of radiation with pinpoint accuracy. The system’s power and flexibility allows clinicians to develop personalized treatments for patients’ individual circumstances. TrueBeam can be used to treat a diverse range of cancers, including tumors of the lung, breast, head and neck, abdomen, liver, and other regions. This groundbreaking technology improves on previous radiotherapy systems in the following ways:
The precision of Varian’s TrueBeam system is measured in increments of less than a millimeter. The system performs accuracy checks every ten milliseconds. This helps the radiation oncologist protect critical organs and healthy tissue surrounding the tumor. The system design also gives the treatment team more options for positioning the patient. In addition, TrueBeam has a new “gated” option to synchronize beam delivery with the patient’s breathing. This helps maintain accuracy in situations where tumor motion is an issue, such as during lung cancer treatments.
With TrueBeam, treatments that once took 10 to 30 minutes can now be completed in less than two minutes. With faster treatment, there is less chance of tumor and patient movement. What’s more, the treatment is more comfortable and less stressful for patients.
TrueBeam’s sophisticated open architecture integrates imaging, real-time tracking, respiratory gating, and treatment delivery. This makes it possible to deliver treatments more quickly and accurately, while monitoring and adjusting for tumor motion. TrueBeam rotates around the patient to deliver a prescribed radiation dose from nearly any angle.
TrueBeam’s advanced real-time imaging allows clinicians to actually “see” the tumor they treat in 3-D, and target tumors with sub millimeter accuracy. These images can be used to fine-tune a patient’s position prior to and during the treatment process. The system’s imager generates images 60% faster than earlier generations of Varian technology, an enhancement that allows the radiologist to reduce the X-ray dose to the patient by 25%.
TrueBeam’s quiet operation and shorter treatment times create a more comfortable experience for the patient than most radiotherapy systems. Music can be played during treatment, and enhanced communication technology allows for ongoing interaction between the patient and the therapist who operates the equipment. Three closed-circuit television systems let the therapist monitor the patient at all times.