Ipswich, England, June 21st 2006 – Breast cancer patients at Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust are among the first in the country to participate in a study to test image-guided radiotherapy (IGRT), which enables clinicians to better image the cancer site at the time of treatment. Clinicians at the hospital are using a new On-Board Imager® device from Varian Medical Systems to better image the post-lumpectomy breast for radiotherapy.
“The normal procedure has been to treat the whole breast after a lump has been surgically removed, to make sure any remaining cancerous cells are destroyed,‿ says Andrew Poynter, Cancer Research Lead at Ipswich Hospital. “Using this new procedure, we implant gold marker seeds in the breast cavity following the surgical excision and we use the On-Board Imager to match the position of these markers at every treatment. This will allow us to match the radiation dose delivered to where there’s the highest risk of recurrence. It’s tailored radiotherapy which some people have dubbed ‘risk adaptive radiotherapy’. Our initial experiences have been very encouraging.‿
The On-Board Imager makes it possible for clinicians to image and treat on a single machine that rotates around the patient to take X-ray images and deliver treatments from virtually any angle. Mounted on the medical linear accelerator, the On-Board Imager device produces high-resolution images of the tumour and tracks changes in tumour shape, size or position over a multi-week course of treatment. It also enables clinicians to track and adjust for tumour motion caused by the patient’s breathing.
This work at Ipswich forms part of a pilot study led by Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge, which is examining the feasibility of using IGRT for post-lumpectomy breast cancer patients. The pilot study will provide vital data for a national, multi-centre trial called ‘Import High’ led by Professor John Yarnold at the Institute for Cancer Research. This trial aims to test risk-adapted and partial breast radiotherapy treatment in patients at a high risk of local tumour recurrence.
Using the On-Board Imager, Ipswich is currently the only hospital taking part in the trial that is able to take daily X-ray snapshots using kilovoltage imaging, which means patients receive higher quality images at much lower doses than with megavoltage imaging.
Editorial contact: Neil Madle, Varian Medical Systems, +44 7786 526068, email@example.com
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/