Saturday, 15 November 2014

Modern day Radiotherapy: an alternative to surgery in early stage Lung Cancer

Newer advancements in Radiotherapy Techniques for Lung Cancer available at FMRI


Gurgaon, November 7, 2014:  
Lung cancer is a leading cause of cancer mortality throughout the world. Nearly 25% of lung cancer patients are candidates for curative treatment which includes use of surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy or combination of these modalities.
Operable lung cancer can be managed with surgery followed by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Patients with locally advanced non operable disease may achieve long-term survival with curative radiation therapy combined with chemotherapy.

In advanced or metastatic disease, improved survival and control of symptoms can be achieved with radiotherapy, chemotherapy, targeted agents, and other supportive measures.

According to Dr Anusheel Munshi, Additional Director, Department of Radiation Oncology, FMRI, “The preferred candidates for curative radiotherapy (chemo radiation) in locally advanced lung cancer are those with good performance status and no significant weight loss. Chemo radiation in lung cancer can occasionally cause early or delayed toxicity, most notably lung pneumonitis and esophagitis but these effects are greatly minimized by use of advanced radiotherapy techniques.”

“For patients with metastatic disease (disease spread to other sites such as brain or bone), radiotherapy is an established modality for effective control of symptoms. The role and benefits of high precision concurrent chemoradiation in locally advanced lung cancer patients have been well established in various international studies and reviews,” he added.

“Sparing of the normal structures has been made more achievable than ever before by use of technologies such as Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT)”said Dr Munshi.
The present machines have the unique capability of imaging the patient just before treatment or during treatment to ensure high precision delivery. Such techniques are classified as Image guided radiotherapy (IGRT). IGRT ensures that there is concurrence between the planned treatment and the delivered treatment.

A recent advance in lung radiotherapy is Stereotactic conformal radiotherapy (SCRT). This is alternative to surgery for early stage lung cancers, especially for patients not suitable for surgery in view of their general condition. Single fraction hypofractionated (Radiosurgery) treatments initially started for brain lesions such as arterio venous malformations, meningiomas and acoustic neuromas. However, this technique is now being used for extra-cranial sites as well, including lung tumors and liver metastasis.

Dr. Dilpreet Brar, Regional Director, FMRI said, “In the case of lung cancer the advantages of high precision and shorter overall treatment duration with these techniques have translated into improved control and survival rates as compared to conventional radiotherapy.”
Most modern centres have contouring based treatment, something akin to surgical resection of the tumour and lymph nodes.

According to cancer specialists at FMRI, technological advances in radiation oncology are therefore aplenty, appear with regular frequency and are invariably accompanied or preceded by authentic physics data and dosimetry.

About Fortis Healthcare Limited
Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading integrated healthcare delivery service provider in India. The healthcare verticals of the company primarily comprise hospitals, diagnostics and day care specialty facilities. Currently, the company operates its healthcare delivery services in India, Singapore, Dubai, Mauritius and Sri Lanka with 66 healthcare facilities (including projects under development), over 10,000 potential beds and approx. 280 diagnostic centres. In a global  study of the 30 most technologically advanced hospitals in the world, its flagship, the Fortis Memorial Research Institute’ (FMRI), was ranked No.2, by ‘topmastersinhealthcare.com, and placed ahead of many other outstanding medical institutions in the world.

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