Swedish Clinic Boosts Speed and Precision of Radiotherapy for Cancer Patients with Elekta Beam Shaping Technology
UPPSALA, Sweden, April 12 – Uppsala University Hospital is the first clinic in Scandinavia to treat cancer patients using radiotherapy systems equipped with Elekta’s innovative Agility™ 160-leaf multileaf collimator (MLC). It will enable clinicians there to rapidly and accurately tailor therapeutic radiation beams to tumor targets. The hospital began treating patients with one Agility-equipped Elekta Synergy® system last October and in February 2013 became clinically operational with a second Elekta Synergy with Agility.
“The 5 mm leaves of Agility are particularly valuable in conforming to the shape of small targets that are close to small at-risk organs,” says Kristina Nilsson, M.D., Co-Chief Radiation Oncologist at Uppsala University Hospital. “What’s really useful is having that same leaf width across the entire 40 X 40 cm treatment field, which means that we don’t have to limit highly conformal treatments to targets in small fields – we can offer them to all patients.”
In addition to high precision, Agility provides market leading leaf speeds, which has improved the clinic’s delivery times. For example, Agility combined with Elekta’s continuously variable dose rate (CVDR) makes VMAT beam delivery even faster, she adds. For a two arc VMAT plan, this combination has resulted in reduction in delivery time from five minutes to just two minutes.
“The transmission around the leaves also is lower in Agility than other MLCs, which means with Agility we can reduce the lateral spread of the beam and decrease the radiation dose to healthy organs and tissues,” Dr. Nilsson notes.
Uppsala University Hospital now treats 25 to 30 patients per day on each of the Agility-equipped Synergy systems, for a total of 100 to 120 patients daily on its two Elekta Synergy linear accelerators and two Precise Treatment System™ machines.
“With Agility, we’re providing patients in Uppsala and the country with faster and more accurate treatments,” Dr. Nilsson says. “In addition, with the low transmission Agility provides, we’re also ensuring safer therapy by reducing radiation exposure to organs-at-risk and normal tissues.”
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Elekta is a human care company pioneering significant innovations and clinical solutions for treating cancer and brain disorders. The company develops sophisticated, state-of-the-art tools and treatment planning systems for radiation therapy, radiosurgery and brachytherapy, as well as workflow enhancing software systems across the spectrum of cancer care. Stretching the boundaries of science and technology, providing intelligent and resource-efficient solutions that offer confidence to both healthcare providers and patients, Elekta aims to improve, prolong and even save patient lives.
Today, Elekta solutions in oncology and neurosurgery are used in over 6,000 hospitals worldwide. Elekta employs around 3,400 employees globally. The corporate headquarters is located in Stockholm, Sweden, and the company is listed on the Nordic Exchange under the ticker EKTAb. Website: www.elekta.com.