Cancer Treatment Centers of America

Calypso® 4D Localization System™

What is the Calypso® 4D Localization System™?

The Calypso® 4D Localization System helps our doctors deliver focused doses of radiation with greater accuracy to patients receiving external beam radiation therapy for all soft-tissue tumors (except those in the lung) and for external treatment of tumors in superficial tissues, such as the breast.

Internal organs such as the prostate, pancreas, liver or adrenal gland can shift during radiation treatment as a result of breathing and normal movement in the intestines. Typically, radiation oncologists expand the treatment area to ensure the moving target is irradiated. For prostate cancer, for example, this means that healthy tissue near the prostate may also be affected, possibly leading to urinary, bowel and sexual side effects.

Also known as GPS for the Body®, this technology allows our radiation therapy team to continuously track movement of internal organs in real time and concentrate radiation to the tumor. In the recent generation of the Calypso system, the beacons are able to show the position of the patient’s tumor 25 times a second, and automatically shut the beam off in the event of a cough, sneeze, stomach bubble or other internal change of position that moves the tumor out of the X-ray beam.  By targeting cancer cells and avoiding nearby healthy tissues, Calypso spares the bladder, rectum and other critical structures. Common side effects of radiation treatment—such bowel and urinary frequency and erectile dysfunction in prostate cancer patients—may be greatly minimized.

The Calypso system features a 4D Console that allows our radiation oncologists to track exactly where the tumor is during radiation treatment. Before treatment, patients undergo a simple outpatient procedure, where Beacon® transponders are inserted into the skin through ultrasound guidance or placed on top of the skin's surface. The Beacon transponders then communicate with Calypso during radiation treatment using safe, radiofrequency waves.  If the prostate or other targeted tumor site moves out of position, the X-ray beam is stopped, until the target moves back into position for safe radiation.

Calypso is currently FDA approved for use in the treatment of all soft-tissue tumors, except in the lung.

Calypso® 4D Localization System™ medical animation