A non-invasive alternative to surgery for the treatment of both cancerous and non-cancerous tumors anywhere in the body, including the head, spine, lung, prostate, liver and pancreas. The treatment – which delivers beams of high dose radiation to tumors with extreme accuracy – offers new hope to patients worldwide.
Though its name may conjure images of scalpels and surgery, the CyberKnife treatment involves no cutting. In fact, the CyberKnife System is the world’s first and only robotic radiosurgery system designed to treat tumors throughout the body non-invasively. It provides a pain-free, non-surgical option for patients who have inoperable or surgically complex tumors, or who may be looking for an alternative to surgery.
Traditional radiation therapy typically delivers radiation to a wide field of tissue in the body resulting in the treatment of both the tumor and a large amount of surrounding healthy tissue. This is necessary because traditional radiation therapy systems did not account for tumor motion and were therefore much less accurate. These wide radiation fields increased the possibility of damage to normal tissue, increasing the risk of side effects following the radiation treatment. To reduce the number of side effects, clinicians were forced to rethink the way traditional radiation therapy was delivered. As a result, the overall radiation dose was reduced and the number of treatments was divided into 30 to 40 sessions, delivered over a period of weeks.
Radiosurgery devices, such as the CyberKnife Robotic Radiosurgery System, were designed to deliver radiation with extreme accuracy, targeting the tumor with minimal damage to the surrounding healthy tissue. The accuracy of the CyberKnife System allows clinicians to deliver very high doses of radiation safely because the size of the radiation field is smaller and only includes the tumor and a small amount of surrounding tissue. This allows for less damage to surrounding healthy tissue and for clinicians to complete treatment in 1 to 5 days vs. the weeks it takes traditional radiation therapy.
The CyberKnife System is a non-invasive alternative to surgery for the treatment of tumors anywhere in the body. The treatment – which delivers high doses of radiation to tumors with extreme accuracy – offers new hope to patients who have inoperable or surgically complex tumors, or who may be looking for an alternative to surgery.
Patient benefits include:
- No incision
- No pain
- No anesthesia
- No hospitalization
- Little or no recovery time
- Immediate return to daily activities
Most patients experience minimal to no short-term side effects and often recover quickly. Depending on the treatment site, some patients may experience different side effects such as mild fatigue or nausea. The CyberKnife physician will disclose all possible side effects prior to treatment.
The effects of radiosurgery vary and may occur gradually and over time. The timeframe can range from days, months or years depending on the medical condition targeted. Some tumors may disappear slower than others or may simply stop growing and present no further cell activity. After treatment, patients typically are asked to get periodic images (CAT scan or MRI) of their tumor(s) and additional tests may be required, so the physician can monitor the effectiveness of the treatment.