News | September 17, 2008

Breast Cancer Tool Targets Hard-to-Treat Lumpectomy Sites

September 18, 2008 - Radiation Medical Group Inc. (RMG), San Diego, is the first U.S. center to use a new version of the SAVI applicator, the SAVI 6-1Mini applicator, which is designed to deliver radiation to small or hard-to-treat lumpectomy cavities, making a shorter, more convenient form of radiation therapy available to more women.
“We are proud to be the first center to offer this new SAVI applicator option,” said Gina Mansy, M.D., a radiation oncologist at RMG. “We are committed to providing women with state-of-the-art technology and the latest treatment breakthroughs, to arm them in the fight against breast cancer.”
Devices like Cianna Medical’s SAVI applicator provide a form of radiation known as breast brachytherapy, which targets the tumor site from inside the breast. Breast brachytherapy typically involves two treatments per day for five days compared to traditional whole breast radiation that requires five treatments a week for six weeks.
In addition to shortening the therapy time, the new applicator minimizes radiation exposure of healthy tissue, reducing the risk of damage to critical structures such as the skin, heart, lungs and ribs.
SAVI is reportedly the only single-entry device that enables physicians to sculpt the radiation dose specifically to the patient’s specific anatomy. The ability to control the dose provides several advantages over other, balloon brachytherapy devices.
“I’ve used the balloon on several occasions, but there were many cases where I either had to remove the device or decline treatment because the tumor bed was too close to the skin,” said Dr. Mansy. “This newer device uses multiple catheters, which allows you to manipulate the dose and direct it away from healthy structures, regardless of the size or shape of the cavity.”
“The SAVI 6-1Mini applicator will benefit many women who are interested in breast brachytherapy, particularly those who are not candidates for other devices,” said Julie Barone, M.D., a breast surgeon with Oncology Associates of San Diego. “This new device provides the option of an accelerated form of radiation to women with small breasts or those with lumpectomy cavities close to the skin.”
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