February 14, 2008 – The first Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) treatment at General Hospital Vienna was successfully completed on Jan. 31, making the hospital one of the first in the world to carry out this innovative cancer treatment option, according to the hospital.
VMAT technology, made by Elekta, provides a simultaneous control of the linear accelerator gantry position and speed, the leaves and angle of the multileaf collimator and dose rate. This flexibility enables highly conformal cancer treatments, as well as optimal sparing of the healthy tissue around the target. In addition, VMAT significantly reduces patient treatment times, leading to greater patient comfort and stillness for a more efficient and precise treatment, said the company.
Dietmar Georg, Ph.D., head of the Division of Medical Radiation Physics at General Hospital Vienna (Medical University Vienna, Vienna, Austria) said the first patient was treated for glioblastoma, a serious brain tumor that was positioned near vital structures such as the brain stem and optical lenses and nerves. The treatment consisted of three non-coplanar VMAT arcs with collimator rotation. The entire treatment took 10 minutes, including creation and evaluation of the patient’s brain images and treatment positioning.
"This therapy is applied in very complex situations where the localization and form of the tumor requires tailored intensity modulated treatment," Georg said.
VMAT is pending regulatory approvals in certain markets, including 510(k) clearance in the U.S., and is not yet available for commercial sale in the U.S.
For more information: www.elekta.com