CyberKnife Treatment for Cancer

Top Facts about CyberKnife Treatment for Cancer

CyberKnife treatment is a modern technology which enables non-invasive treatment of many kinds of cancers. It is the next big thing in cancer treatment. Many patients’ worldwide head to India for quality care and low CyberKnife treatment cost in India which is a fraction of that in their home countries.

What Is CyberKnife?

It is the world’s first and best robotic radio-surgery system. The best part is that it does not involve any cutting or incisions and is much more accurate and efficient compared to traditional radiation therapy. CyberKnife is an alternative, non-invasive cancer treatment option for patients who have non-cancerous or cancerous tumours developed in any body part.

CyberKnife is a breakthrough in medical technology. It was invented in 1987 by Dr. John R Adler, professor of radiation oncology at Stanford University. Today, the device is manufactured by the company, Accuray.

Technology Used

CyberKnife uses a technological device referred to as Linac (Linear Accelerator). This system has high tracking ability, which makes it possible for oncologists to trace origin and growth of non-cancerous or cancerous tissue, anywhere in the human body.

Linac is connected to a robotic arm which can access the affected region and deliver radiation of high dose. Using the help of high quality imaging and special software, doctors are able to manipulate the robotic arm and deliver radiation with high accuracy. Such a pain free modality needs no incisions to be made in the body and can be conducted as an out-patient procedure.

Types of Cancers Treated

CyberKnife can treat cancerous tumours anywhere in the body. It can target cancers of the head, neck, pancreas, prostate, breast, liver, lungs, spine and brain. It is ideal for persons who wish to have non-surgical treatment of cancers.

Difference with Conventional Treatment

Besides being anaesthesia free, pain free and non-invasive, CyberKnife treatment varies much from traditional cancer treatment.

One of the main limitations of traditional treatment is because of the involuntary movement of the organs and the body. This causes the impact of radiation on healthy tissues and organs.

Because of this, surgeons use immobilization devices to keep the body stable during radiation. These range from rectal balloons to metal frames of the skull.

But with CyberKnife, the radiation moves along with the motion of the body organs and the tumors during the procedure, thus reducing risk of radiation exposure to healthy tissue. Hence the accurate delivery of radiation mitigates the need for immobilization devices which makes the patient comfortable and avoids requirement for additional surgery. Patients can recover fast and return to normal routines.

Why Is It A Good Option?

Already CyberKnife has helped millions of patients around the globe. It has got recognition by various federal and state health agencies worldwide. 

This technology has also higher success rates than other cancer treatments. Apart from being non-invasive and pain free, the treatment also ensures that patient suffers from minimum side-effects. This is because the CyberKnife targets the tumour with high accuracy by delivering high dose radiation from multiple locations over a shorter time period, thus avoiding the possibility of impact on healthy tissue.

Accuracy of Procedure

This new treatment technology has matchless accuracy with regard to identifying the exact location of the tumour – a feature lacked by most traditional treatments. Tumours will move involuntarily and this causes side effects by traditional treatments.

But in case of CyberKnife treatment, the tumour is tagged with high dose radiation from the nearest angle. The motion of the beams follows the motion of the tagged tumour, thus treating cancer most accurately.

Details of the Procedure

At first, the medical team will do a thorough study of the tumour and will place gold markers onto the tumour to identify exact location. Next it will conduct a series of imaging tests to ascertain exact shape and size of tumour and develop a suitable treatment plan. The aim of this plan is to determine the dose of radiation, the target place of radiation and areas to be avoided. 

The patient is made to lie down on a comfortable table and CyberKnife robots move around his body for delivering radiation. This highly effective imaging system continually tracks the tumour location, thus making the system able to make any correction with regard to applied radiation.

 These are all top facts about the revolutionary new technique of CyberKnife treatment. While it costs anywhere from $50, 000 to $70,000 to carry out the procedure in the US, CyberKnife treatment cost in India is only $10,000 to $11,000. Hence, India has become a medical tourism hub for this procedure.

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