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Radiation Oncology

Last Updated 10/13/2011 2:32:22 PM



Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (I.M.R.T.)

El Camino Hospital is committed to providing our cancer patients the most effective cancer-fighting weapons available today. Our Varian Clinac 21 EX linear accelerator offers Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (I.M.R.T.) guided by a sophisticated 3-D treatment planning system which helps physicians map their radiation therapy treatments.

The linear accelerator is unique in that it delivers precisely focused, high-energy doses of radiation, destroying tumors and other cancerous areas without affecting normal tissue. With the computerized 3-D planning system, the beam of radiation can be conformed to the exact size and shape of the tumor and the dose regulated to provide as much radiation as possible to the cancerous area.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery

El Camino Hospital is advancing some of the technologies used to treat a variety of cancers, particular neurological tumors. Included in our suite of services is a stereotactic radiosurgery (SRT) device called BrainLab™, which is based on linear accelerator technology.

It shapes high-energy beams directly on the tumor. The photon beams are delivered through a high-resolution "beam shaper," also called a micro-Multileaf Collimator. This device consists of individually motorized tungsten leaves that can be automatically and precisely positioned to allow the beam to conform to the shape of the lesion from any angle. This allows doctors to specifically target the tumor without missing any area.

Dr. Robert Sinha, Director, Radiation Oncology at El Camino Hospital has presented clinical data and papers at various national conferences on the use of these technologies. The clinical results are promising, with 92 percent local control of brain metastases treated with radiosugery. He and other researchers also compared stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT) to surgical resection for the treatment of acoustic neuromas and vestibular schwannomas. They found that SRT provided 100 percent local control and 85 percent hearing retention, better than traditional surgical treatment.

SRT and SRS (stereotactic radiosurgery) are not for all patients. It is important to talk with your doctor to determine if you are a candidate.

Brachytherapy

Brachytherapy, an innovative treatment for certain types of prostate, lung and breast cancers. The procedure involves the surgical implantation of radioactive "seeds". These radioactive seeds hone in on the tumor or the region at risk of having any residual cancer cells after surgery. This technique amplifies the radiation dose just to the area needed, sparing surrounding healthy tissue.