For Immediate Release
November 14, 2012
London Regional Cancer Program launches improved radiation technology
LONDON, Ontario – TrueBeam, a new state-of the-art radiotherapy system at London Health Sciences Centre’s (LHSC) London Regional Cancer Program (LRCP) promises to provide more accurate radiation treatment to cancer patients while simultaneously reducing treatment time.
“This technology is an important advancement for patient care at LRCP,” says Dr. Michael Lock, radiation oncologist, LRCP. “The work of a highly specialized team, including radiation therapists and physicists, has culminated in the ability to treat London’s first patient with this new technology.”
Patient Brunina (Bruna) Furrow is LRCP’s first patient to benefit from TrueBeam. Furrow has breast cancer that metastasized to her bone and most recently liver. “Throughout my health-care journey I am grateful for the care that I have received,” says Furrow. “Being offered this new technology continues to give me hope.”
“We are able to see cancer cells better, target more accurately and therefore treat patients with higher doses of radiation while reducing the duration and quantity of their treatment,” says Stewart Gaede, medical physicist, LRCP. “For example, we can set up a respiratory motion management strategy allowing us to only treat a patient during the exhale phase of their respiratory cycle, called respiratory gating, with increased efficiency.”
Gaede works with radiation therapists to ensure accurate treatment and is responsible for ensuring radiation safety and machine quality.
Using TrueBeam, health-care workers see a patient’s anatomy in three dimensions on closed-circuit television systems, and thereby provide image-guided treatment. The system also monitors and adjusts to the movement and breathing of a patient, allowing health care workers to more precisely target cancer cells.
“With shorter and more accurate treatments, patients are less likely to move or be uncomfortable during their treatment which helps us avoid healthy cells,” continues Dr. Lock. “Although we are using higher doses of radiation, patients will likely experience less toxicity.”
Media is invited to view a demonstration of TrueBeam and interview Bruna Furrow, Dr. Lock and Dr. Gaede on Thursday, November 15 from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Please contact Kathy Leblanc if you are interested in a demonstration/interview slot.
About London Health Sciences Centre
London Health Sciences Centre has been in the forefront of medicine in Canada for 137 years and offers the broadest range of specialized clinical services in Ontario. Building on the traditions of its founding hospitals to provide compassionate care in an academic teaching setting, London Health Sciences Centre is home to Children’s Hospital, South Street Hospital, University Hospital, Victoria Hospital, two family medical centres, and two research institutes – Children’s Health Research Institute and Lawson Health Research Institute, a joint research initiative with St. Joseph’s Health Care London. As a leader in medical discovery and health research, London Health Sciences Centre has a history of over 50 international and national firsts and attracts top clinicians and researchers from around the world. As a regional referral centre, London Health Sciences Centre cares for the most medically complex patients including critically injured adults and children in southwestern Ontario and beyond. The hospital’s nearly 15,000 staff, physicians, students and volunteers provide care for more than one million patient visits a year. For more information visit www.lhsc.on.ca
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