PALO ALTO, Calif., March 23 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ -- Varian Medical Systems, Inc. (NYSE: VAR), the world's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, has received Shonin approval from the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) for three-dimensional cone-beam CT imaging using the company's On-Board Imager (TM) device for image-guided radiotherapy. This imaging modality can now be used by clinicians in Japan to generate high-contrast three-dimensional images of a targeted tumor and surrounding anatomy, for improved tumor targeting.
Varian's On-Board Imager is a digital imaging system mounted on a radiotherapy treatment machine via robotically controlled arms that operate along three axes of motion. This allows the imager to be positioned optimally for the best possible view of the tumor and surrounding anatomy. The device produces high-resolution images of the tumor, and it can also track tumor motion to provide doctors with a clear indication of exactly how a tumor will move during treatment due to normal breathing and other physiological processes.
The On-Board Imager is the most comprehensive and versatile imaging system for fine-tuning patient positioning at the moment of treatment. In addition to 3-D cone-beam CT images, it can generate radiographic (2-D) and fluoroscopic (moving) images. Each of these imaging modes offers doctors different kinds of information about the tumor to be treated, and facilitates automated patient positioning just prior to treatment.
"The cone-beam CT imaging capability gives doctors an important third modality for pinpointing the exact location of the tumor," said Dow Wilson, president of Varian's Oncology Systems business. "It is especially useful when the tumor is far from any bony landmarks, and hard to distinguish from surrounding soft tissues. Having access to volumetric cone-beam CT data has the potential to significantly improve tumor targeting in these difficult cases."
Varian received regulatory approval in the U.S. to market the On-Board Imager(R) device in March 2004, and the cone-beam CT feature in November 2004. As of the end of the company's first quarter this year, there were over 400 installations of the On-Board Imager for IGRT complete or in progress around the world.
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 3,900 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 56 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com/.