AARHUS, Denmark – Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark has treated two liver cancer patients with stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) using Calypso® 'GPS for the Body' transponders from Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR) for real-time monitoring during the treatment. A 77-year-old man and a woman, aged 76, both with metastases in the liver, were treated in three sessions over six days, making them the first liver cancer patients in Europe, and only the second and third in the world, to be treated in this way.
"Our experience so far is that tracking tumors with Calypso transponders may help make a significant difference in liver SBRT treatments," says Morten Hoyer, professor of clinical oncology at Aarhus. "In the past, we would have to apply a more generous treatment margin around the tumor because of uncertainties regarding the precise tumor position from day to day. Calypso allows us to monitor the treatment real-time and reduce the treatment margin, meaning less healthy tissue is treated."
Per Poulsen, associate professor responsible for motion management tools, adds, "Calypso is a real-time monitoring device that provides additional evidence that the dose is being delivered where it should be, which is even more important in higher dose treatments like radiosurgery. These implanted markers are a very good representation of what is happening real-time."
Medical physicist Esben Worm said the Calypso transponders, three of which are implanted at the edge of the tumors, have enabled the team at Aarhus to deliver respiratory gated stereotactic treatments for the first time. In gated treatments, patients are treated after they have exhaled and the beam is automatically turned off while they inhale, improving precision by adjusting for motion caused by breathing. "The Calypso transponders help ensure the tumor is in the planned treatment position during exhale and provides easy online correction of the patient position to counteract tumor drift," said Esben Worm.
Advanced stereotactic body radiotherapy treatments for lung and liver patients have been delivered at Aarhus for over 15 years. Since 2005, the oncology center has exclusively used Varian equipment and software for its radiotherapy patients.
"As a next step we hope to use Calypso transponders to track tumor motion with the treatment beam, which will allow fast and smooth treatment delivery with real-time adaptation to both respiration and target movement," said Dr. Poulsen. "We also hope to explore their use in proton therapy treatments."
It was recently announced that the National Proton Therapy Center in Denmark will be located at Aarhus University Hospital and Varian has been selected to equip the new facility with its ProBeam™ proton therapy system.
About Varian Medical Systems
Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, focuses energy on saving lives by equipping the world with advanced technology for fighting cancer and for X-ray imaging. The company 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 also a premier supplier of X-ray imaging components, including tubes, digital detectors, and image processing software and workstations for use in medical, scientific, and industrial settings, as well as for security and non-destructive testing. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 6,800 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America, Europe, and China and approximately 70 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com.
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SOURCE Varian Medical Systems