BREAST CANCER

What to Expect

An effective, less disruptive treatment option

The Radixact System® with TomoTherapy® technology maximizes radiation delivered to the target — while minimizing radiation dose to surrounding healthy tissues. The result is highly personalized treatment designed to significantly reduce the risk of the side effects that too often disrupt the lives of patients during and after treatment. Clinical studies support the use of the TomoTherapy System in the treatment of breast cancer and show evidence of excellent tumor control with minimal radiation delivered to surrounding organs at risk (heart, lungs, etc.) and healthy tissues1, 2, 3 The treatment regimens described in the studies reinforce the benefits of the unique capabilities of the TomoTherapy platform and what clinicians and their patients could expect to see with the Radixact System.

NON-INVASIVE

Radixact treatment is an outpatient procedure that does not require incisions or general anesthesia. Most patients will not require hospitalization or a long recovery period. Radixact treatment also eliminates the inconvenience and risk associated with radioactive seed implants.

FEWER CLINIC VISITS

The Radixact System was designed to deliver highly precise and accurate radiation dose to the target, to reduce the most common side effects4 of breast radiotherapy, such as reddening of the skin or problems moving the arm or shoulder.

A faster return to everyday life

With Radixact treatment, the majority of patients can continue normal activity during and immediately following treatment. Just as important, the Radixact System is designed to minimize radiation dose to healthy tissues and reduce the risk of common side effects, with the goal of improving quality of life both during and after treatment. In some circumstances, side effects may occur. 

Your Radixact Treatment Process

INITIAL CONSULTATION

The Radixact System treatment process begins with a consultation with a radiation oncologist who will provide perspective on this as a treatment option specific to your condition. The physician will review your biopsy results, imaging and other medical conditions.

YOUR TEAM

Breast cancer treatment with the Radixact System involves a multi-disciplinary team approach, which may include several specialists:

  • Surgeon
  • Medical Physcist
  • Radiation Therapist
  • Radiation Oncologist
  • Medical Oncologist
  • Medical Support Staff

PREPARING FOR TREATMENT

Prior to Radixact treatment, you will undergo imaging scans so that your treatment team can determine the exact size, shape and location of your breast tumor, as well as nearby anatomy.

IMPLANTING FIDUCIALS

Approximately two weeks prior to treatment, a short outpatient procedure is required in which three to five tiny gold pellets – called fiducial markers – are implanted in the prostate. These fiducials are used in many SBRT procedures as imaging reference points so that the tumor can be tracked.

TREATMENT PLAN

Following these preparatory visits, you could return for specific imaging for radiation therapy and treatment planning. Using CT, and/or MRI and/or PET scan data, your treatment team will determine the area to be targeted by radiation, the radiation dose, and identify critical structures — such as the heart or lung – where radiation should be minimized.

The medical physicist will then calculate a precision-optimized radiation delivery plan, leveraging the Radixact System’s sophisticated treatment planning algorithms to help deliver a safe and personalized treatment.

TREATMENT

Approximately one to two weeks after your treatment plan is finalized, you will begin treatment sessions. Treatment sessions are non-invasive outpatient procedures, and nothing will be required of you during treatment. No need for restraints or for you to hold your breath during treatment. No anesthesia is required during the radiation treatment.

On each treatment day, you will be carefully positioned on the treatment couch. The Radixact System acts as both a CT scanner and treatment delivery machine. This unique combination enables doctors to take a CT scan immediately before each treatment. With that image, they can verify the position of the tumor and, if necessary, adjust your position to help make sure radiation is delivered with high precision.

Once the short imaging procedure is complete, treatment delivery will begin. As the Radixact patient couch moves you at a deliberate pace through the center of the gantry, radiation beamlets are delivered precisely to the treatment area from 360 degrees.

You can expect your Radixact treatment to require daily sessions over several weeks. Because the Radixact System can deliver radiation continuously, without requiring interruptions to reposition, the entire treatment process typically lasts 10-20 minutes — including patient set-up time.

POST-TREATMENT

The majority of patients can continue normal activity during and immediately following treatment. Most patients experience minimal side effects and can quickly return to their daily routines with little interruption to their normal activities during or following their treatment.

Your medical team will discuss all possible side effects prior to treatment and may prescribe medication to control any side effects, should they occur. You also should schedule and attend any follow-up appointments.

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Learn More About Radixact Treatment

References:

1 O’Donnell et al. “Early Experience of TomoTherapy-based Intensity-modulated Radiotherapy for Breast Cancer Treatment.” Clinical Oncology 2009 21: 294-301.

2 Van Prijs et al. “Short course radiotherapy with simultaneous integrated boost for stage I-II breast cancer, early toxicities of a randomized clinical trial.” Radiation Oncology 2012, 7:80.

3 Michalski et al. “A dosimetric comparison of 3D-CRT, IMRT and static tomotherapy with an SIB for large and small breast volumes.” Medical Dosimetry. 2014 Summer;39(2):163-8. doi: 10.1016/j.meddos.2013.12.003.

4 Buwenge M, Cammelli S, Ammendolia I, et al. “Intensity modulated radiation therapy for breast cancer: current perspectives.” Breast Cancer Targets Ther. 2017;9:121–126.

Share Your Story

Educating others about your experience with the Radixact® or TomoTherapy® System can help others who face similar decisions about their own cancer treatment choices.

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