Image-Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT)
Swedish was the first in the Northwest and among the first in the world to offer this innovative procedure. The Swedish Cancer Institute has invested in three Elekta Synergy treatment units that include cone-beam computed tomography (CT) capabilities making it possible to obtain a CT image set of the patient immediately before treatment to ensure accurate patient positioning.
Image-Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) Radiation system, the all-digital treatment device, allows physicians to see your tumor at the very time of treatment, even if a tumor has moved - because of a patient's breathing, heartbeat, gastrointestinal changes or other activities. Tumors will also change their position and their size during the course of radiotherapy treatment, which typically consists of multiple treatments over several weeks.
At the start of radiotherapy, technicians take a CT scan of a tumor and enter that data into a treatment-planning system. IGRT software produces a three-dimensional, digitized image of the patient's tumor, sharply identifying the slightest contour. Once that image is captured, it can be reconstituted for every treatment session. If significant tumor movement has occurred, physicians can then adjust the patient's position or, if required, re-do the treatment plan, minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissue.
With IGRT, physicians can match the radiation beam to the precise shape of your caner far more precisely reducing the total amount of radiation you using built-in imaging technology at ultra-low doses. The IGRT reduces or eliminates the need for implanting markers, as physicians can visualize soft tissue detail using imaging tools. Tumors that were previously untreatable, because of their proximity to organs or the spinal cord can now receive treatment.