New Imaging Suite from Varian Medical Systems Facilitates Real-Time Image-Guided Brachytherapy Treatments for Cancer | Varian

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New Imaging Suite from Varian Medical Systems Facilitates Real-Time Image-Guided Brachytherapy Treatments for Cancer

PALO ALTO, Calif., June 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR) is introducing the Acuity Brachytherapy Suite, which enables doctors to deliver real-time image-guided brachytherapy treatments. Currently in use at four major cancer clinics in the U.S., the suite combines a Varian Acuity™ imaging system with technology for planning and delivering state-of-the-art brachytherapy treatments.

Brachytherapy involves placing radiation sources directly into tumor sites so that a high dose is delivered to the target with minimal impact on surrounding healthy tissues. Traditionally, Brachytherapy has required that patients be moved in the midst of treatment, often to an operating room for applicator placement, then to Radiology for CT scanning in order to get the images needed for guiding placement of radiation sources, and finally to the Radiation Oncology Department for the actual treatment.

"By combining the imaging and treatment technologies in one procedure room, we are enabling doctors to improve and expedite treatments," said Dow Wilson, president of Varian's Oncology Systems business. "This fits with Varian's mission of developing state-of-the-art technologies that help doctors raise the quality of patient care."

According to Karla Knott, Varian's Acuity business unit manager, using the Acuity Brachytherapy Suite doctors can place catheters, acquire images for treatment planning, and deliver a treatment in as little as 30 minutes, without moving the patient room to room. "We expect that this can speed up treatments by at least half an hour, and several hours for some cases," she said.

"Doctors can base their treatments on real-time images taken in the room during the procedure," Knott added. "This increases treatment accuracy by reducing the risk of catheter movement and streamlines the entire process, sparing patients from unnecessary waiting and anxiety."

Varian's Acuity imager generates excellent three-dimensional images that can be used both for treatment planning, and for guiding the placement of catheters and needles during brachytherapy procedures.

Bradley Prestidge, MD, of the Texas Cancer Clinic in San Antonio, Texas, is one of the suite's earliest adopters. "It's very convenient -- a matter of imaging for less than a minute and waiting a couple of minutes for the software to reconstruct the three-dimensional image that we use to guide the treatment," he said. "That's a three minute process, so it doesn't add significantly to time spent in the procedure room."

According to Rose Guerrero, oncology service line director at Overlake Hospital in Bellevue, Washington, the Acuity Brachytherapy Suite has made delivery of brachytherapy treatments more convenient.

Brachytherapy solutions from Varian Medical Systems, the world leader in radiation therapy, are used in 1,825 treatment centers worldwide. Used alone or with external beam radiation therapy, brachytherapy is used primarily for treating breast, prostate and gynecological cancers, providing patients with new treatment options, and gaining recognition as a viable and highly targeted cancer treatment approach.

About Varian Medical Systems

Varian Medical Systems, Inc. of Palo Alto, California is the world's leading supplier of equipment and software for treating cancer. The company is also a premier supplier of components including X-ray tubes and flat-panel detectors for medical, scientific, and industrial imaging. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 3,280 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 55 sales and support offices around the world. The company operates manufacturing and engineering centers in Crawley (England), Helsinki (Finland) and Baden (Switzerland) and has headquarters for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) based in Zug, Switzerland. Additional information is available on the company's web site at

Forward Looking Statements

Statements in this press release regarding future business, events, plans, objectives, expectations, estimates, and other similar matters, including, but not limited to, statements using the terms "can" and "expect," constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements contained in this press release are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated, including, but not limited to, the risks described in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and other reports filed from time to time by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent the Company's judgment as of the date of this press release. The Company assumes no obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements because of new information, future events, or otherwise.

   Neil Madle
   Varian Medical Systems Europe

SOURCE: Varian Medical Systems, Inc.

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