SAN DIEGO, Nov. 1, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- ASTRO Booth # 201 -- The TrueBeam™ system for image-guided radiotherapy and radiosurgery, first introduced in the United States in April of this year, is now being used at treatment centers across the United States and Europe to target tumors of the lung, liver, pancreas, head and neck, brain, and spine. The system, which is manufactured by Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR), is currently on display at the annual meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) in San Diego this week.
Designed to treat a moving target with unprecedented speed and accuracy, TrueBeam is unique in how it dynamically synchronizes imaging, patient positioning, motion management, and treatment delivery during radiotherapy or radiosurgery. TrueBeam significantly reduces the number of steps needed to complete a treatment. TrueBeam also features a High Intensity Mode that delivers dose up to four times faster than other linear accelerators.
At the Stanford University School of Medicine, doctors have now delivered RapidArc® radiosurgery treatments for both lung and pancreatic cancer, using TrueBeam in High Intensity Mode. These treatments were completed far more quickly than is possible with similar treatments delivered at lower dose rates. For example, a lung radiosurgery case involving two arcs took just three minutes, according to Max Diehn, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor.
Clinicians at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) have now used the TrueBeam system to deliver fast, highly precise treatments of tumors in the brain, lung, liver, prostate, head and neck, and pancreas.
Christopher Willey, M.D., Ph.D., treated a metastatic lesion of the adrenal gland. "Surgery was not an option, so we offered radiosurgery using the TrueBeam system," Willey said. Using the High-Intensity Mode as well as respiratory gating to compensate for tumor motion due to the patient's breathing, Willey's team delivered three treatments on non-consecutive days. "The total treatment time, including imaging, was about 25 minutes each day. Using other systems, I suspect the same treatment would have taken closer to two hours."
"Cutting down treatment time by a factor of two to four—that's a big deal for patients," said Chris Dobelbower, M.D., Ph.D., radiation oncologist at UAB. "It's hard to lie on a hard table or to be immobilized in a confining mask for two hours. Particularly for patients with medically inoperable liver and lung lesions, TrueBeam enables us to offer something we may not have been able to offer otherwise. TrueBeam is perfect for what we want to do—deliver quality patient care in an efficient way."
"We deliver all of our stereotactic body radiosurgery treatments on the TrueBeam system now," said Nathan Jordan, lead radiation therapist at UAB. "We've had referring surgeons in here to see us complete an SBRT procedure in fifteen minutes, and they've been just amazed. The workflow enhancements are excellent; things are automated to happen in an order that makes sense. For example, when we are imaging prior to treatment, each screen on our console automatically flows into the next. There are fewer steps. It's not just the treatment times that are shortened—the workflow is also much faster."
In Switzerland, doctors at the University of Zurich have treated over 100 cases using the TrueBeam system. For one case of lung cancer, a RapidArc treatment in High-Intensity Mode was completed in just over a minute. "The High-Intensity Mode is very exciting," said Urs Martin Lutolf, M.D., clinical director and chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology. "At the highest dose rates, we can reduce the length of treatment to one-fourth the amount of time needed at lower dose rates."
TrueBeam installations have been completed or are under way at more than 30 treatment centers around the world. More than 125 TrueBeam systems have been ordered since the system was introduced in April of this year, and more than 430 patients have now received treatment on a TrueBeam system.
"Varian's goal has been to reduce the time it takes to complete advanced radiotherapy treatment in less than two minutes, through technology advancements," said Dow Wilson, president of Varian's Oncology Systems business. "We got there with RapidArc for image-guided IMRT. Now, RapidArc delivered with TrueBeam™ is enabling clinicians today to deliver stereotactic body radiotherapy—SBRT—in as little as two minutes."
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 5,100 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America, China, and Europe and in its 79 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com/.
FOR INFORMATION CONTACT:
Meryl Ginsberg, (650) 424-6444
SOURCE Varian Medical Systems, Inc.