February 10, 2014 — The ViewRay system, a MRI-guided radiation therapy system, is being used to treat patients at Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Mo. The ViewRay system provides a combination of simultaneous radiation therapy delivery and continuous magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for the treatment of cancer.
MRI-guided radiation therapy enables clinicians to see a patient’s internal anatomy in real-time and keep radiation beams on target when the tumor moves during treatment. One of the initial treatments being delivered on the ViewRay system is stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) for lung cancer. SBRT uses a few very high doses of radiation are delivered to small, well-defined tumors to kill cancer cells while minimizing exposure to surrounding healthy organs.
“Real-time MR guidance offers a way to treat tumors that move with respiration,” said Jeffrey Bradley, M.D., S. Lee Kling Professor of Radiation Oncology at Siteman Cancer Center and Washington University School of Medicine. “Our physicians and physicists report the ability to see tumors move in real-time during the entire treatment. This helps to ensure that tumor targets are hit and healthy tissue is spared.”
The ViewRay system provides continuous soft-tissue imaging during radiation therapy using MRI-guidance, so that clinicians are able to see exactly where the radiation dose is being delivered and adapt to changes in the patient’s anatomy.