LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., July 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Two prostate cancer patients became the first people in New York to receive a faster, more comfortable form of highly accurate radiotherapy in pioneering treatments at Radiation Oncology Associates of New York (a Division of Integrated Medical Professionals, PLLC). Using RapidArc™ radiotherapy technology from Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR), doctors at the clinic, which will be changing its name to Advanced Radiation Centers of New York in August of this year, are now delivering image-guided intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) two to eight times faster than is possible with earlier technologies.
"Our radiation treatment facilities are committed to being on the cutting edge of technology," said Shawn Zimberg, M.D., Medical Director, Radiation Oncology. "RapidArc enables us to quickly deliver IMRT treatments that are designed to target tumors and malignancies very precisely while dramatically reducing the exposure of surrounding tissues."
The two patients, a 65-year-old banker with early stage prostate cancer and a 77-year-old retired attorney with locally advanced prostate cancer, have begun receiving RapidArc treatments that are delivered in less than two minutes.
"The faster these sophisticated treatments are delivered, the more accuracy we can expect, because the patient is less likely to move during a shorter timeframe," Zimberg explained. "Studies have shown that the prostate position can shift by up to several millimeters during a long treatment session as neighboring organs such as the bladder constantly change their volume. By completing each treatment more quickly, we make it less likely that tumor or organ motion will affect the accuracy of our treatments. I expect the speed and precision of RapidArc treatments will benefit a great many patients."
RapidArc image-guided IMRT treatments are completed in two simple steps. First, clinicians capture a set of high-resolution X-ray images of the targeted tumor and surrounding anatomy and use these to position the patient very accurately for treatment.
"Being able to detect minute changes in tumor position from one day to the next helps to ensure that we target the tumor precisely," Zimberg said. "With this technology, we can accomplish the imaging and fine-tune the patient's position in less than two minutes."
Once the patient has been positioned properly, the RapidArc treatment delivers the prescribed dose in less than two minutes, with a single rotation of the treatment machine around the patient. Earlier forms of image-guided IMRT using fixed beams or helical tomotherapy typically require 10-15 minutes or more to complete. Most patients undergo a regimen of daily treatments Monday through Friday for 6-8 weeks, depending on the type of cancer.
John Keane, medical physicist at the Radiation Oncology Associates facility in Lake Success, said: "One of the reasons I find my work so compelling is that I have the opportunity to implement cutting edge technology to help people fight cancer. With RapidArc, I am witnessing a great advancement in medical technology that is further enhancing patient care in the practice."
"The 65-year-old banker came to us after his research led him to choose a treatment center that could offer him the most advanced technology available," Zimberg said. "The other patient told us his RapidArc treatment was faster and easier than he could ever have expected."
Dr. Zimberg notes that he expects to use RapidArc technology in the treatment of a head and neck cancer patient, as well as a primary brain cancer patient within the next few weeks. "These patients often have difficulty in a prolonged treatment. I expect that RapidArc will allow them to get through their treatment more comfortably than would have been possible before."
The American Cancer Society estimates that, in the state of New York this year, there will be 97,130 new cases of cancer, and 10,500 new cases of prostate cancer.
About Radiation Oncology Associates of New York/Advanced Radiation Centers of New York
Radiation Oncology Associates of New York (ROANY), a division of Integrated Medical Professionals, will be changing its name to Advanced Radiation Centers of New York in August of this year. It is the largest freestanding radiation oncology practice in New York, with facilities in Long Island, and the surrounding New York City boroughs and counties. In addition to its commitment to compassionate care and unparalleled experience, ROANY is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art technologies. As such, ROANY uses Varian linear accelerators in all of its treatment facilities, including Varian's CBCT, OBI, Aria and IGRT technology. ROANY is the experience leader in the New York Metropolitan area in using image-guided radiation therapy technologies.
About Varian Medical Systems
Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, is the world's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The company supplies informatics software for managing comprehensive cancer clinics, radiotherapy centers and medical oncology practices. Varian is a premier supplier of tubes and digital detectors for X-ray imaging in medical, scientific, and industrial applications and also supplies X-ray imaging products for cargo screening and industrial inspection. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 4,600 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 60 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com/.
FOR INFORMATION CONTACT: Meryl Ginsberg, Varian Medical Systems 650-424-6444 or firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE: Varian Medical Systems, Inc.
CONTACT: Meryl Ginsberg of Varian Medical Systems, +1-650-424-6444,
Web site: http://www.varian.com/