All adverse effects it causes are 1st grade adverse events. 1st breast is immobilized with the help of a vacuum assisted cup specially designed for this purpose, having 1mm slice thickness, cup have stereotactic frame inside it. Immobilization of breast ensures proper delivery of radiations to breast tumor. Patient is asked to lie down on her stomach which ease the immobilization of breast.With gamma pod breast cancer can be treated by delivering ablative doses with sharp gradients with the help of stereotactic image guidance. This system have highly focused radiation which can be achieved at isocenter, this happens because of cross firing radiations from 36 radiation arcs which can be achieved by rotating by 36 individual beams of cobalt 60.
This system is effective and widely used due to its spot action i.e. radiations only hit the tumor without disturbing healthy cells of breast. This system optimizes an optimal path of the focal spot, it is done by optimization algorithm which is borrowed from computational geometry. Target of radiations can be covered 90 to 95 % with gamma pod single dose prescribed. Doses prescribed for surrounding tissues of breast are reduced. Treatment plan of gamma pod works by continuous motion of the treatment couch.
Gamma pod stereotactic radiotherapy have greater potential to shorten the timing of radiation treatment and also have the potential to eliminate surgery option. As it ablate the tumor cells completely and also sterilize the tumor bed along with this. There are 5 sessions of gamma pod stereotactic body radiotherapy. This system is most efficient system along with reduced cost. It is also patient friendly. It is mostly preferred as compare to current accelerated, hypo fractionated and conventional treatments.
Gamma pod stereotactic body radiotherapy system have following benefits over other current treatment options:
- Higher doses can be delivered with high conformity and is completely a non-invasive treatment.
- This system reduce the duration of treatment i.e. from many weeks to some days. (treatment with gamma pod hardly take 5 min to 40 min in single session depending on therapy plan being used)
- It improves quality of life of patients (women).
- It increases patient comfort while treatment continues
- It also reduce dose of surrounding cells along with heart and lungs.
- Gamma pod system after invention is under development for almost a decade. The 1st prototype was installed and tested at the university of Maryland medical center.