July 3, 2012 — A 51-year-old male became the first person to benefit from a radiation therapy technique that provides exceptional precision and high-speed delivery. Clinicians at St. James's University Hospital used Elekta's Agility multileaf collimator (MLC) and Elekta volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) to treat the patient's tongue cancer. The combination of the two innovations reduced the time it takes to deliver the radiation beams from five minutes down to just two minutes.
Recently released for sale across Europe, and with 510(k) clearance in the United States, Agility is Elekta's revolutionary new MLC. The device comprises many individual tungsten leaves used to shape beams of radiation as therapeutic doses are delivered from different angles around the patient. Agility's 160, five-millimeter wide leaves are capable of traveling at twice the speed of those in a conventional MLC, and provide a much-improved ability to conform to the shape of tumors.
Elekta VMAT is an advanced radiation therapy technique that delivers treatment in one or more continuous high-speed arcs around the patient, enabling the radiation dose to precisely conform to a tumor by modulating the radiation beam's intensity during gantry rotation. Clinicians can use Elekta VMAT with complete or partial arc(s) to reduce treatment times substantially.
Elekta's Monaco treatment planning system also contributed to the patient's treatment by enabling much lower parotid (salivary gland) and larynx doses than traditional plans the Leeds team had been producing.
For more information: www.elekta.com