Radiation Oncology Centre at Dharamshila Hospital is a unique centre which has maintained its position of being a show window of the latest cutting edge technologies launched in International Markets. The centre works with a totally patient centric approach to provide personalized, safe, efficient and high quality Radiation therapy.
The centre treats all types of cancers of the body from head to toe and is constantly adding newer technologies and taking innovative steps to benefit the cancer patients. This constant pace of innovation yields the potential for greater accuracy, short treatment time, reduced integral dose (one tenth, to prevent damages to healthy tissues surroundings the tumour), increased tumour control probability and above all possibility of modulating the radiation intensity with single or multiple arcs.
The centre is involved in teaching, training and research since its inception. Patient friendly congenial environment, systems and standards of treatment all as per national and international guidelines are the key ingredients of our tell-tale stories of excellence.
Radiotherapy is a non-invasive modality of cancer treatment required by 50 – 60% of patients. It is least traumatic and most cost effective. It can be given alone as well as concomitantly with chemotherapy or sequentially with surgery.
The radiation therapy has evolved in the last decade with innumerable innovations in delivering safe, efficient and quality radiation with minimal dose and in shortest time. It is usually given externally using Linear Accelerators or internally by using microselectron with HDR Brachytherapy machines. Before the treatment, an individualized mould is prepared, planning CT is done and Treatment Planning is done for each and every patient.
It is an elaborate process requiring preparation of cast / mould for immobilization of the patient and contrast CT Scanning at 3 mm – 5 mm cuts of the tumour bearing area of the body. CT images are directly transferred to the treatment Planning System.On the basis of the images, contouring of the tumour is made on each section of CT scan along with critical structures. A prescription is worked out on the basis of tumour volume, nature of tumour and general condition of the patient. Physicist works out optimal field projection to the tumour area with minimal radiation to critical structures through Varian/ Elekta software developed for each type of treatment protocol like IMRT, IGRT, SBRT, SRS / SRT and VMAT.
These plans are jointly reviewed by Radiation Oncologist and Physicist and the best option is accepted for execution of treatment. Patient is then taken up for treatment. Once again the field verification (confirmation of accurate treatment position) is done through portal imaging on KV (or) MV or CBCT basis which is incorporated in the Linear Accelerator.
Radiation Therapy is given as a fractional treatment whereby the patient receives a daily dose of radiation, five days a week for six to seven weeks for radical treatment. At each daily treatment, the linear Accelerator is rotated around the patient so that the entire tumor receives an optimal radiation dose.
The geometry and intensity of the radiation field is adjusted to match the size and shape of the tumor and the type of cancer. Treatment beam is shaped using a multileaf collimator (MLC) within the Linear Accelerator head that functions like the aperture of a camera.
Radiotherapy produces some side effects which are directly related to volume of tumour, dose of radiation and anatomical sites. All these accompaniments are temporary and subside on completion of radiotherapy. Weekly clinical evaluation is done by oncologist to see the overall progress of treatment and any associated problems. On completion of treatment, patient is provided with the summary of treatment and instructions to follow henceforth. Patients are frequently reviewed to analyze the disease status and to identity and manage the late side effects accordingly. Patients are instructed to perform certain procedures and exercises to reduce the side effects. Patients are monitored throughout their life.