India is one of the few countries where cyber knife cancer radio surgery treatment is available. Based on radiosurgical principals, Cyberknife surgery is a frameless robotic radiosurgery system that delivers a stereotactic radiotherapy with the intention to treat cancer patients more accurately than standard radiotherapy. Cyber knife treatment for cancer uses multiple and high dose of radiation, so that doctors can precisely aim at a tumor without damaging healthy body tissues. No anesthesia is required, no hospitalization and minimal post operative care.
Cyber knife surgery is a new cancer treatment procedure and is therefore uncommon and a tad expensive. It is the only radiosurgery system to bring together a linear accelerator, a robotic arm and the image guidance system. With its unique capabilities, It can target lesions and tumors that might be considered unreachable by other radiosurgery systems. It is also the only system that can continually monitor and adjust in real-time for patient movement during treatment. Also, due to its precision, Cyberknife treatment for cancer targets the damaged region only without harming or affected the surrounding tissues or regions.
On this page, we will throw some light on Cyberknife surgery, treatment of cancer with Cyber knife and provide a brief overview of Cyberknife surgery in India.
Radiosurgery and How Cyberknife is Different from Other Systems
Although Radiosurgery has been used for over 30 years to treat both cancerous and benign tumors and growths, It is a very new concept and different than its counterparts. Radiosurgery does not remove the tumors, rather it uses high doses of radiation to destroy the tumor cells and stop the growth of active cells. Multiple beams of radiation produced by a linear accelerator are directed at the abnormal growth within the body.
Various radiosurgery systems are available, the most most widely used being the Gamma Knife and modified linear accelerators. It distinction advantage over the other options is its precision, which enables physicians to maximize the amount of radiation that reaches the tumor or abnormal growth while minimizing exposure to healthy tissue and organs.
Cyberknife Treatment Procedures
Cyber knife treatment works in mainly two ways. In the first methodology, lightweight radiation delivery equipment is inserted on a multi-jointed robotic arm, so that it can be easily reach tumors in any part of the body. In the second method, the technique uses image guidance system, which allows the Cyberknife therapy to track and allocate the tumor.
This uses image guidance and robotics to maintain a high degree of precision and is particularly useful for tumors that are close to critical structures.
The biggest advantages which the Cyber knife treatment offers are that no anesthesia is required, no hospitalization and no cuts or incisions at all. This means that there is no recovery time and everyday activities can be resumed immediately. Also, the treatment is undertaken in 1 to 6 sessions, which can be performed on either the same day or different days, as per the patient’s convenience.
What does Cyber knife Surgery Treat?
The Cyberknife system has FDA clearance for treatment of tumors in any location of the body. This surgery is administered for both cancerous and benign tumors. All stages, from I until IV (metastases) can be treated. Following are treated using Cyberknife system:
a. Cancers involving the brain
b. Lung cancers
c. Pancreatic cancers
d. Metastatic liver cancers
e. Cancers involving the spine
f. Benign brain tumors
g. Malformations of blood vessels within the brain
h. Trigeminal neuralgia
i. Metastatic orbital tumors, orbital lymphomas and orbital inflammations (tumors or inflammations around the eye)
Cyberknife Treatment Cannot be Used
For tumors or metastases bigger than 3-4 cms., in which case they are treated via a similar radiotheraphy called IMRT, which is not as precise as Cyberknife but the results are good if the tumors are not solid.
Benefits of Cyberknife Surgery
Cyber knife treatment of Cancer is an extirely new approach and offers many advantages over other methods. It is a noninvasive alternative for patients who are not ideally suited for or are unable to undergo traditional surgery. The benefits include:
a. No anesthesia
b. No pain
c. No incisions
d. No bleeding
e. Immediate return to normal routine
f. Completely frameless
g. No hospitalization
h. Minimal radiation exposure to healthy tissues and organs
i. Even if tumors have received the maximum allowed dosage of radiation, they can still be treated.
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