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Surgical Alternative

Wed, 09/02/2009 - 6:11am

St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital performs noninvasive alternative to surgery for tumor treatment

HOUSTON, Sept. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital is the first hospital in Houston to feature the CyberKnife, a noninvasive alternative to surgery for the treatment of both cancerous and non-cancerous tumors.

The CyberKnife is the world's first and only robotic radiosurgery system designed to treat tumors using beams of high-dose radiation with extreme accuracy throughout the body, including the brain, prostate, lung, spine pancreas, liver and kidney. As an outpatient procedure, benefits to the patient include no anesthesia, no incision and immediate return to normal activity.

"We are pleased to be the first to offer the CyberKnife to the Houston community," says Mark LaRocco, PhD, vice president and patient safety officer, St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital. "This innovative technology offers our patient a new level of treatment and a new hope for recovery, especially for those who have inoperable or surgically complex tumors."

The CyberKnife combines two leading technologies: lightweight radiation and image guidance. Lightweight radiation, mounted on a multi-jointed robotic arm, allows for more flexible delivery, and can reach areas of the body that are untreatable with other, more limited radiosurgery systems. Image guidance utilizes X-ray machines that take computerized images throughout the procedure. CyberKnife is able to correct for small movements, such as respiration, during treatment.

CyberKnife patients can expect to spend 30 to 90 minutes on their entire procedure. Depending upon the complexity of their case, the number of treatments can be as few as one or up to four. CyberKnife allows individuals to return to their daily lives more quickly with a shorter recovery time compared to traditional treatment methods.

For more information about CyberKnife , visit www.stlukestexas.com/cyberknife.

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