Radiation therapy is non-invasive treatment that uses high energy X-rays. It is overseen by a doctor called a radiation oncologist. Types of radiation therapies used at CHI Health include:
- Stereotactic Radiotherapy (SRT)
CHI Health Cancer Care has been awarded an accreditation in radiation oncology by the American College of Radiology (ACR). The ACR accreditation was received after a review of the care given to patients at: CHI Health Bergan Mercy, CHI Health Immanuel, CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center and CHI Health Lakeside. A radiation oncologist may use radiation to cure cancer or to relieve a cancer patient’s pain.
TomoTherapy® Hi·Art® (Highly Integrated Adaptive Radiotherapy) System, located at Immanuel Medical Center, allows doctors to check the location of tumors before each treatment, then deliver painless, precise radiation therapy resulting in unmatched accuracy for cancer patients, especially those with breast, lung and prostate tumors.
TomoTherapy combines Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT) with a computerized tomography (CT) scanner allowing doctors to view the treatment area in three dimensions. This 3D technology allows physicians to verify the position of the tumor before each treatment session, so adjustments can be made on the spot to make sure that radiation is delivered exactly where it should be.
The unique CT scanner design delivers radiation continuously from every angle, unlike traditional radiation therapy equipment which projects radiation from only a few directions. TomoTherapy transforms a single beam of radiation into tens of thousands of tiny beamlets aimed directly at the tumor in a 360 degree delivery pattern. This helical delivery allows for unprecedented precision, meaning less damage to surrounding healthy tissue. Some of the benefits of TomoTherapy are:
- Does not require a lengthy set-up process
- Targets large, small and multiple lesions
- Thousands of rotating beamlets allow for precise delivery treatment
- Locates tumors before each treatment
- Minimizes radiation to surrounding healthy tissue
Brachytherapy involves placing some flexible plastic catheters (tiny tubes) into the breast. The treatment program at CHI Health uses 5 days of partial breast brachytherapy (temporary radiation implant) instead of 5 - 7 weeks of external beam radiotherapy. Brachytherapy has the advantages of being a shorter treatment, and irradiating less of the body.
The outpatient procedure is performed by a board-certified radiation oncologist and is done under ultrasound guidance. Nine times over the following 5 days, the catheters are briefly connected to our high-dose-rate brachytherapy machine for an internal radiation treatment through the catheters. These treatments take about 15 minutes each and are painless. On the last day, the catheters are easily removed, and you will be able to go home. During the 5 days of treatment you will be an outpatient, you will not be radioactive and you can do most of your usual activities.
CHI Health has strict eligibility guidelines for patients who are candidates for partial breast irradiation. Please contact your physician for more information.