IGRT and its three-dimensional imaging system is one of the most sophisticated and advanced radiation therapy techniques available. Not only does IGRT enable your physician to pinpoint and “see” malignant tumors during treatment, this technology allows for improved accuracy and precise focus of the radiation beam, thereby sparing more of the healthy surrounding tissue and vital organs.
One challenge with conventional radiation treatment options has been to give a high enough dose of radiation to the tumor to be effective, while trying to protect as much of the surrounding healthy tissue as possible. Another challenge has been to accurately target the tumor. Patients and their organs move, and that means the tumor moves. The current method of locating a tumor uses CT scans before treatment. But because that location may move during the weeks of treatment, more of the surrounding healthy tissue is at risk and subject to radiation. IGRT takes into account variations in body and internal organ movement before and during treatment, helping doctors precisely locate tumors. The benefits of IGRT include:
- Safely delivering higher, more effective doses of radiation
- Offering new hope to patients with what were considered “untreatable” tumors
- Helping to protect surrounding tissue
- Shortening the overall treatment period
- Reducing side effects and improving the patient’s quality of life