Radiation therapy (or radiotherapy) is commonly used to treat many types of cancer. It uses high energy X-rays to damage cancer cells, which in turn stops those cells from growing or causes them to die. The aim of radiotherapy is to kill cancer cells whilst causing as little damage as possible to the normal body cells around the cancer.
Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) and Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) are very effective radiotherapy techniques. These treatment techniques enable a high dose of radiation to be delivered to the cancer cells using a precisely focused method whilst sparing the neighbouring normal cells. The main difference between SRS and SBRT treatments and conventional treatment are:
- A higher radiation dose can be delivered to the cancer cells resulting in better cancer outcomes
- The lower radiation dose to the other body cells results in fewer side effects
- SBRT allows the treatment to be delivered in fewer sessions (usually 3-5 sessions over 1-2 weeks)
- Each session will take approximately 30-45 minutes compared to 10-20 minutes
SpaceOAR at Genesis CancerCare Victoria
Under the guidance of our experienced doctors and in close association with a specialist Urologist, our SpaceOAR program results in significant movement of the rectum away from the prostate gland, enabling a safe and effective treatment to be delivered. In Victoria, Genesis CancerCare has the most experience of any SpaceOAR service, we have conducted studies and published our results in high quality journals. SpaceOAR is a new product to the field of Radiation Therapy. When combined with our highly advanced radiation program side effects are significantly reduced, resulting in an extremely effective treatment without the risks of surgery. SpaceOAR is not a treatment, SpaceOAR helps our treatment to be more effective with better reported outcomes when compared with radiation treatment alone.
Deep Inspiration Breath Hold - How DIBH works / What is it?
For women with left side breast cancer, a major concern is the dose of radiation delivered to the heart which sits to the left side of the body. The radiation dose to the heart could increase the risk of heart disease. Deep Inspiration Breath Hold, or DIBH, is the most efficient way to minimise this risk however, there are other methods to reduce the radiation dose to the heart.
Deep Inspiration Breath Hold is a radiotherapy technique that requires you to hold your breath during your CT scan (measurement scan) and each daily treatment. You need to be able to hold your breath for a short period ~ 20 seconds, several times during each daily treatment. A small plastic box is taped to your chest and a special camera and equipment monitors your breathing. This equipment will only allow the treatment machine to deliver radiation whilst you are holding your breath.