Radiation Oncology

Stereotactic Radiosurgery and Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy

The Department of Radiation Oncology at The Center for Cancer Prevention and Treatment at St. Joseph Hospital offers the latest in focused radiotherapy with both Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) and Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT). These radiation techniques deliver high-dose radiation to focused areas utilizing precision targeting with the help of a 3D reference system. Compared to standard radiotherapy, substantially higher doses of radiation can be dlievered to tumors while reducing the dose to normal tissue. Research has shown that this advanced technology can achieve superior tumor control or cure.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) delivers high-dose radiation to a specific site in a single treatment. This is used primarily for metastatic brain tumors, as well as for some types of nonmalignant brain tumors. In select cases, this treatment can be combined with external beam radiation to improve outcomes. Prior to treatment, you will meet with a skilled team (including a neurosurgeon and radiation oncologist) to determine if this treatment is appropriate for you.

Although this treatment is referred to as radio "surgery", it does not involve an incision, is relatively painless, does not require hospital admission or general anesthesia and can be completed in one day. The treatment requires head immobilization using a stereotactic frame (placed by the neurosurgeon prior to the procedure) or frameless (mask) system. Treatment of each tumor takes less than 30 minutes, patients return home the same day and can return to work the following day. Similar to Gamma Knife or CyberKnife, which are other platforms used to deliver stereotactic radiotherapy, the team at St. Joseph Hospital uses the Varian Triology linear accelerator to deliver state-of-the-art stereotactic radiosurgery treatments.

Stereostacic radiosurgery (SRS) for brain metastases

Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) for lung tumors

Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy

Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) or stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) is used to deliver high-dose, very specific radiation treatments to tumors in the body using accurate anatomic targeting. This is useful treatment both for primary lung tumors, as well as tumors which may have metastasized to the lung, bone, or liver. Prior to receiving treatment, patients undergo a planning or simulation session which includes a CT scan. At the time of simulation, patients may be placed in an immobilization device to minimize movement and increase treatment accuracy. The treatment usually lasts 10-15 minutes and is painless. Because the treatment is so focused and precise, there are often less side effects than with standard radiation. Unlike conventional external beam radiation, whichis delivered daily, Monday through Friday, this treatment is often delivered 2 - 3 times per week over a 10-14 day period. This can result in improved tumor control and decreased side effects compared to standard radiotherapy.