CRAWLEY, England, March 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- A little over a year after Elekta launched its Versa HD™ radiation therapy system, this groundbreaking linear accelerator is routinely being used in the delivery of stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) and radiosurgery (SRS) programs worldwide, often using volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT). The company reports that many Versa HD systems operating clinically are actively engaged in SBRT and/or SRS programs.
Elekta designed Versa HD to afford clinics the versatility to deliver high-volume conventional techniques, in addition to the advanced therapies, such as SBRT and SRS. However, according to Elekta's Kevin Brown, Global Vice President Scientific Research, physicians at a significant number of Versa HD clinical sites were very eager to exploit the system's ultra-sophisticated technologies as soon as possible, in more complex cases requiring the highest precision and speed.
"The majority of patients who receive standard radiotherapy will benefit from the precision and speed of Versa HD," he says. "However, many patients have cancers that are located in very critical areas that demand an extra level of tumor targeting precision, or lesions that require very high doses to reduce the length of the treatment course. Versa HD is perfect for these complex cases by virtue of its advanced beam-shaping, imaging and high dose rate technologies."
Versa HD is equipped with the Agility™ 160 multileaf collimator for high-speed, high precision beam shaping to support exceptionally accurate tumor targeting and improved healthy tissue preservation. Combining this novel technology with a High Dose Rate mode, Versa HD provides rapid delivery of more advanced therapies within standard treatment times.
Leeds a leader
Among the earliest adopters of Versa HD is Leeds Cancer Centre (St James's University Hospital, Leeds, UK), which tested and clinically implemented key Versa HD technologies. Leeds installed two Versa HD systems in July and November 2013.
"Versa HD has had a significant impact on clinical workflow," says Vivian Cosgrove, PhD, Head of Radiotherapy Physics. "Up to 60 patients per day are scheduled for treatment on one of the Versa HD systems. Treatment slots are booked at 10-minute intervals, so that as many as six patients can be treated per hour."
Initially, patients undergoing radical prostate radiotherapy were prioritized for treatment, all with High Dose Rate mode VMAT. In addition, the process to move all non small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) SBRT treatments to High Dose Rate mode VMAT is underway. NSCLC patients have their lung SBRT treatment scheduled to a 20-minute time slot on Versa HD.
Leeds now has the largest clinical service for SBRT in the UK, with 20-25 new patients starting treatment every month and over 600 patients treated to date.
"The adoption of these Elekta technologies has meant major improvements in radiotherapy delivery speeds and greater productivity and efficiency," Dr. Cosgrove says. "This will help both increase patient access to radiotherapy and improve clinical outcomes following treatment."
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Elekta is a human care company pioneering significant innovations and clinical solutions for treating cancer and brain disorders. The company develops sophisticated, state-of-the-art tools and treatment planning systems for radiation therapy, radiosurgery and brachytherapy, as well as workflow enhancing software systems across the spectrum of cancer care. Stretching the boundaries of science and technology, providing intelligent and resource-efficient solutions that offer confidence to both healthcare providers and patients, Elekta aims to improve, prolong and even save patient lives.
Today, Elekta solutions in oncology and neurosurgery are used in over 6,000 hospitals worldwide. Elekta employs around 3,500 employees globally. The corporate headquarters is located in Stockholm, Sweden, and the company is listed on the Nordic Exchange under the ticker STO:EKTAB. Website: www.elekta.com.