LIVERPOOL, England, February 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
- First UK Novalis TxTM Radiosurgery Launched Today
Today, for the first time in the UK, cancer patients are starting to receive treatment with Novalis Tx radiosurgery. This device gives the chance of a cure to those with inoperable tumours and offers the possibility to perform precise painless treatment to tumours in a single patient visit.
The Novalis Tx makes it possible for doctors to treat patients with tumours virtually anywhere in the body in just a single session. Combining a 'sat nav' like targeting system and powerful treatment beams, the Novalis Tx can destroy cancerous cells and helps to protect surrounding healthy tissue. Treatment is also made more patient-friendly by delivering frameless radiosurgery for brain tumours; an alternative to techniques that require immobilisation with an invasive head ring that is affixed to the skull.
In its first year of operation the Novalis Tx, installed at the brand new Clatterbridge Cancer Centre - Liverpool, is expected to treat over 800 cancer patients. It is estimated that 150 of these patients will be priority brain tumour patients where precise, non-invasive treatment is particularly effective.
Dr Brian Haylock, Consultant Oncologist and Clinical Director for Radiotherapy at Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology, comments:
"Unlike some other highly specialised radiation treatment machines, the Novalis Tx can treat many different types of cancer in all over the body allowing us to treat more cancer patients with a single device. This coupled with the speed with which we can treat patients - in some cases in as little as 15 minutes in just one session - means the equipment will be available for the benefit of more patients here in the UK."
The Novalis Tx promises to improve patients' access to world-leading cancer treatment in the UK. Clatterbridge and The Walton Centre have worked in partnership to bring this state-of-the-art treatment option to UK patients. Later this year Novalis Tx machines will become operational at two other specialist NHS cancer centres in Edinburgh and Manchester. Treatment with Novalis Tx will be considered for any patient in the UK for whom their doctor feels it is suitable.
Almost 300,000 people are diagnosed with cancer in the UK each year and recent estimates show that of these almost 50,000 people develop either primary or secondary brain tumours. Malignant primary brain tumours take more years off the average person's life than any other cancer and are the most significant cause of cancer death amongst men under 45 years and women under 352.
Sue Farrington-Smith, Director of the charity Brain Tumour Research, comments on the launch:
"We are delighted that advanced brain tumour treatments like the Novalis Tx are now available to cancer patients on the NHS. The work of Clatterbridge and The Walton Centre Trusts in Liverpool will undoubtedly provide the best cancer care for their patients. This is inspirational stuff."
Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology's new purpose-built facility will be equipped with the Novalis Tx radiosurgery system and two other radiotherapy treatment systems, together with expert cancer rehabilitation and support services.
David Brett, Marketing Director for Radiotherapy at Brainlab, the radiosurgery pioneers who co-developed the Novalis Tx with medical device manufacturer Varian Medical Systems, said:
"We continually strive to develop cutting-edge treatments that offer doctors the best treatment possibilities for their patients. We are proud to be part of the collaboration between leading oncology and neurosurgery teams and delighted to offer better care to UK patients. We hope that the three first sites for the Novalis Tx will help support the provision of improved cancer care to patients."
Brainlab develops, manufactures and markets software-driven medical technology that supports targeted, less-invasive treatment. Core products are image-guided systems and software that provide real-time information used for surgical navigation and radiosurgical planning and delivery.
Brainlab technology drives collaboration between hospitals and clinicians from a wide variety of subspecialties-from neurosurgery and oncology to orthopedics, ENT, CMF and spine and trauma. This integration delivers better access to improved and more efficient treatment.
Founded in 1989, the privately held Brainlab group has 5,180 systems installed in more than 80 countries. Based in Munich, Germany, Brainlab employs 950 people in 16 offices worldwide.
To learn more, visit http://www.brainlab.com.
About Varian Medical Systems
Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, is the world's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The company supplies informatics software for managing comprehensive cancer clinics, radiotherapy centres and medical oncology practices. Varian is a premier supplier of tubes and digital detectors for X-ray imaging in medical, scientific, and industrial applications and also supplies X-ray imaging products for cargo screening and industrial inspection. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 5,100 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America, China, and Europe and in its 79 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com.
About Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology
Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology is the leading NHS cancer specialist hospital for the Merseyside and Cheshire. Based in Wirral, they serve a population of 2.3 million across Merseyside, Cheshire, North Wales, the Isle of Man and South Lancashire. They provide an outstanding level of care; revolutionary cancer treatments and a supportive environment committed to providing cancer patients and their families with advice and support.
Their radiotherapy treatments are delivered in one of the best equipped and largest radiotherapy departments in the UK and their expertise attracts international attention as a market leader in cutting edge radiotherapy treatment techniques and technologies. They will open their first satellite radiotherapy centre in Liverpool in February 2011.
About The Walton Centre
The Walton Centre is a purpose built facility, which was opened in 1998. Since that time they have continued to develop our services at the Centre and in our satellite clinics, with valued support and partnership from Merseyside neurological charities, Neurosupport and the Welsh Neurological Alliance. They provide a comprehensive range of services: neurology, neurosurgery, pain management, rehabilitation and specialist diagnostic services.
The Walton Centre is unique to the NHS in that it is the only specialist Neurosciences Trust in the UK. Based in Liverpool, their catchment population is over 3.5 million and is drawn from Merseyside, Cheshire, parts of Lancashire and Greater Manchester, the Isle of Man and North Wales. However, with an international reputation in some areas of expertise, referrals are accepted on the basis of clinical need from any geographical area.
 Some doctors may opt for a minimally invasive head frame depending on the specific treatment and patient.
 Cancer Research UK. Cancer incidence - UK statistics. 2007. http://info.cancerresearchuk.org/cancerstats/incidence/ (Last accessed 21 Jan 2011)
 Brain Tumour Research, Brain Tumour UK, International Brain Tumour Alliance & Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust. A manifesto for everyone affected by a brain tumour. http://www.braintumouruk.org.uk/sites/default/files/manifesto_4_web_lo_res.pdf (Last accessed 21 Jan 2011)
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SOURCE Brainlab, Varian Medical Systems, Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology and The Walt