PERTH, Western Australia, Aug. 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Cancer patients in Western Australia will receive state-of-the-art radiotherapy treatments using equipment from Varian Medical Systems with the opening of a new cancer center in Perth. Stereotactic radiosurgery for pancreatic cancer patients and an advanced program of IMRT (intensity modulated radiotherapy) are among the new treatments being introduced at the new Sir Charles Gairdner Centre.
The new facility, the only public radiotherapy department in Western Australia serving 2.1 million people in an area the size of Europe, has been equipped with two Varian Clinac® iX linear accelerators and a Trilogy® machine, the world's most versatile radiotherapy treatment device. The new radiotherapy department is the first phase of a new multi-disciplinary cancer center close to the original hospital, which was established in 1961.
Rhonda Coleman, head of radiation therapy, said two of the new accelerators will add extra capacity for additional patients while the third will replace one of their existing three treatment machines giving them five in total. She said that the new devices would enable the hospital to increase the treatment options for patients, with intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) and image-guided radiotherapy (IGRT) programs planned for later this year, as well as an escalation of their existing stereotactic program to encompass pancreatic cancers.
The investment, she said, has come in response to the Baume Report of 2002 which highlighted the desperate need for additional treatment capacity in Western Australia. "Our Varian machines were doing ten-hour days up to about eight months ago but waiting lists were growing and some patients were waiting up to seven months for treatment," said Ms Coleman. "We stepped that up to 13-hour days and brought waiting times down to three months. With this new equipment, we hope to have eliminated waiting lists by Christmas.
"We selected Varian for this project for reasons of reliability, connectivity and support. We need full connectivity throughout the network, particularly as we have doctors going to outreach clinics who need to be able to get hold of data. Also, reliability is crucial and Varian machines just keep on working for a long time.
"We're a busy center and this new state-of-the-art equipment will enable us to offer our patients the most modern and efficient radiotherapy treatments without increasing the amount of time it takes to treat people," she added.
A fully-accessorized Trilogy medical linear accelerator is capable of offering all standard radiation therapies as well as advanced treatments that make it possible to concentrate more dose on tumors while protecting surrounding healthy tissue. It is expected to help doctors to improve cure rates for patients while reducing treatment complications. IMRT, which is made possible with advanced treatment planning software and a multileaf collimator for automated beam shaping, concentrates radiation doses on tumors while protecting more surrounding healthy tissue.
Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital: http://www.scgh.health.wa.gov.au/ High resolution photos available on request About Varian Medical Systems
Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California is the world's leading manufacturer of medical technology for treating cancer with radiotherapy and neurological conditions with radiosurgery. The company is also a premier supplier of X-ray tubes and flat-panel digital subsystems for imaging in medical, scientific, and industrial applications. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 3,600 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 56 sales and support offices around the world. In Europe, the company operates manufacturing and engineering centers in Baden (Switzerland), Crawley (England), Haan (Germany), Helsinki (Finland) and Toulouse (France) and has headquarters for Europe, Middle East, India and Africa (EMEA) based in Zug, Switzerland.
Additional information is available on the company's web site at http://www.varian.com/
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SOURCE: Varian Medical Systems, Inc.
CONTACT: Neil Madle of Varian Medical Systems, +44 7786 526068, or
Web site: http://www.scgh.health.wa.gov.au/
Web site: http://www.varian.com/