Treating Prostate Cancer with CyberKnife
Radiation therapy is a treatment that uses high energy x-rays (photons) to kill, shrink, or control the growth of tumors. Radiation therapy works by damaging cells, disabling them from growing and dividing. The goal of any radiation treatment is to destroy cancer cells while minimizing the side effects on healthy tissue. As imaging technologies have improved over the last several decades, radiation therapy has integrated those improvements to enhance dose delivery and minimize side effects. Radiation may be recommended as an alternative to surgery or in addition to other therapies. There are several kinds of radiation therapy. The CyberKnife® System delivers a type of radiation therapy known as stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT).
SBRT couples a high degree of targeting accuracy with very high doses of extremely precise, externally delivered radiation, thereby maximizing the cell-killing effect on the tumor(s) while minimizing radiation-related injury in adjacent normal tissues.
Studies have indicated that prostate cancer cells have a high sensitivity to the amount of radiation delivered in each treatment session. This sensitivity suggests that a larger radiation dose delivered in a smaller number of sessions may result in better long-term control of the disease. Compared to conventional radiation therapy that requires approximately 30 to 40 sessions over several weeks, prostate SBRT can be completed in four to five sessions over one to two weeks.
Advantages of CyberKnife
- Noninvasive, NO incisions, NO knife
- NO anesthesia, NO Catheter, or hospitalization required
- 5 or fewer outpatient treatment sessions
- Treatments last only 45 minutes
- Little to NO recovery time
- Allows for an immediate return to daily activities
- Minimal, if any, side effects due to pinpoint precision of high-dose radiation delivery
- Minimal radiation exposure to healthy tissue surrounding the tumor treatment site