PALO ALTO, CALIF. September 14, 2004 Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR) today announced the introduction of a new lightweight applicator for delivering post-lumpectomy partial breast irradiation. The Advanced Breast Template System for high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy dramatically reduces treatment times and aids patient comfort. The Advanced Breast Template System is the first commercially manufactured template system for interstitial breast brachytherapy using multiple implantation techniques.It simplifies the post-lumpectomy implantation of either needles or catheters for irradiation of the tumor bed where HDR brachytherapy is intended as the sole treatment. It can also be used for more traditional boost treatments that combine brachytherapy with external beam radiotherapy.
“This new device offers doctors a superior way of performing breast brachytherapy treatments,” says William Hyatt, general manager of Varian’s Brachytherapy business. “The design allows for great flexibility in planning customized treatments for each patient.”
The Advanced Breast Template System consists of three main components: a lightweight titanium breast bridge, titanium stabilization rails and Lexan breast templates.The system is flexible enough to accommodate techniques that have been described by Dr. Robert Kuske and by the clinicians from Detroit’s William Beaumont Hospital, pioneers of this approach for treating breast cancer.
The system’s components are housed in a convenient aluminium case that can be placed in an autoclave for sterilisation. The positioning of needle holes on the template allows for great flexibility in treatment design; needle holes at the very edge of the template allow doctors to place needles very close to the chest wall. The breast templates come in three sizes for easy adaptation to patient anatomy and the desired dose distribution. Varian Medical Systems currently offers over fifty applicator products for the GammaMed and VariSource brachytherapy systems. These applicators can be used to treat a wide range of cancers, including cancer of the vagina, cervix, endometrium, breast, bronchus, esophagus, nasopharynx, and prostate. Approximately a million new cases of breast cancer are now diagnosed each year worldwide and the incidence of the disease is increasing globally, a half of these occurring in the US and Europe. Current statistics suggest that 1 in 9 women who reach the age of 90 will contend with breast cancer.
# # #
Advanced Breast Template System, GammaMed and VariSource are trademarks ofVarian Medical Systems.
High resolution image available on request.