Duke Fights Tumors With New Technology

Armen Hareyan's picture
Advertisement

Duke is the first medical center in the world to utilize a new, non-invasive technology for radiosurgery to target brain tumors and other tumors.

Using the Novalis Tx system, which arrived at Duke in spring 2008, John Kirkpatrick, MD, PhD; John Sampson, MD, PhD; Fang Fang Yin, PhD, and their colleagues have developed innovative treatment techniques that deliver radiation to brain tumors and other tumors with extreme precision.

Advertisement

The system works by delivering high-energy, precisely shaped beams of radiation to the tumor from multiple directions. This allows the physician to target the tumor precisely and minimize damage to healthy surrounding tissue.

"The goal of radiation therapy has always been to maximize the dose of radiation to the tumor while sparing healthy tissue," says Kirkpatrick, clinical director of radiation oncology.

"The systems that we are using now are dramatic improvements over the tools that were available just five years ago, and the Novalis Tx is considered the best of this new generation. With this system, we can safely, accurately and efficiently deliver high-dose radiation, maximizing killing of cancer cells and minimizing the side effects of radiation therapy for our patients."

Treatment with the new, noninvasive technology takes approximately one hour as opposed to six hours for preparation and treatment with the prior process. Patients are fitted with a custom mask which reduces the anxiety of the halo brace that was previously used.

Share this content.

If you liked this article and think it may help your friends, consider sharing or tweeting it to your followers.
Advertisement

Comments

My mom Audrey S had surgery and radiation for parotid gland cancer (high grade muco epidermoid?) in 2001 at cleveland clinic with dr ramon esclamado and later treated by dr walter lee (both now at duke U.) Now, 7 years later a new tumor is growing and breaking the skin in the same vicinity of the neck beneath the ear. Based on a CT scan, we are also told the tumor is wrapped around the juggular vein. Can someone tell me why or why not she is a good candidate for cyberknife or stereotactic surgery to extend and improve her quality of life. She is 86 years old, active, and other than the slightly weeping and bleeding tumor on her neck feels well. We have been told there is "no treatment" recommended (I think) because the skin in that area has been so traumatized by previous surgery and radiation. Thank you, Tom ([email protected])