As part of the cancer care multi-disciplinary team, our radiation oncologists coordinate every aspect of care, with oncologists, radiologists, surgeons and pathologists to help decide the best course of treatment for each patient.
TomoTherapy is a Revolutionary Way to Treat Cancer
TomoTherapy HI-Art system is the most advanced radiation delivery system. It combines precise 3-D imaging from computerized tomography (CT scanning) with highly targeted radiation beams to deliver radiation with extreme precision to treat the cancer while minimizing damage to surrounding tissues.
How TomoTherapy Works and What to Expect
TomoTherapy integrates treatment planning, patient positioning and radiation treatment delivery with one machine.
After checking in for your daily treatment, you will be taken to the TomoTherapy room where a radiation therapist will help you onto the Hi-Art systems couch. You will probably lie on your back, and the therapist may fit you with a special device to help you hold still during your TomoTherapy treatment.
TomoTherapy Hi-Art System – a Two-Step Tomo Process
- Tomography for Treatment Planning
Before each treatment, a therapist takes a verification CT image (VRCT) of the treatment site to check the exact size, shape and location of the tumor. Some tumors change shape or even shift position from day-to-day. Based on the first VRCT images taken, the therapist may change your position or move the couch slightly to make sure the treatment targets the correct area.
After the VRCT image is taken your physician decides how much radiation the tumor should receive, and calculates acceptable levels of radiation for surrounding, healthy tissues. From here, the TomoTherapy Hi-Art System is configured to the appropriate pattern, position and intensity of radiation for your treatment. The couch then carries you through the machine once again, this time more slowly, as the Hi-Art system delivers your treatment.
- TomoTherapy for Radiation Delivery
TomoTherapy combines intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) with a spiral delivery pattern. During your treatment, radiation is delivered by a linear accelerator that rotates many times around you. The linear accelerator also moves in association with a device, called a multileaf collimator (MLC), that’s part of the Hi-Art System. The MLC has two sets of interlaced leaves that modulate radiation beams while you move slowly through the center of the machine’s ring (while lying on the machine’s couch). As the radiation is being delivered it is constantly modulated to target the exact size and shape of your cancer, including multiple sites at the same time.
The procedure usually takes about 15 minutes. It is important that you move as little as possible during the actual treatment. It is painless and feels no different from having a CT scan or an X-ray taken. You may hear a clicking noise and the hum of the machine. These are normal sounds that the system makes. You will not feel or see the treatment as it is being performed. Data from your treatment is totally integrated in the TomoTherapy Hi-Art System.
Benefits of TomoTherapy
Targeted radiation treatments are delivered by rotating beamlets to large, small and/or multiple cancerous areas. Radiation to surrounding healthy tissue is minimized.