Dr. Oneita Taylor: One of the advanced type of treatments for breast cancer is that of the TomoTherapy® image-guided radiation. The TomoTherapy image-guided radiation utilizes a CT scan, which is actually built into the linear accelerator, taking the CT scan image before each radiation treatment to ensure that we're treating the patient correctly. The radiotherapy beam is sculpted around the normal tissue. For example, with breast cancer, there is quite a bit of normal tissue associated with the breast tissue. This would include lung tissue and, especially on the left side, heart tissue. With the TomoTherapy image-guided radiation, we're able to sculpt the radiation therapy beam around the normal heart and lung, decrease the dose to those structures and avoid excessive radiation to those areas and decrease the risk of significant complications associated with the radiation.
With the TomoTherapy, too, we're able to deliver a newer type of radiation treatment for breast patients who want to undergo conservative management of their breast cancer. These are in patients who are desirous to have a lumpectomy followed by radiation and not lose their breast as in a mastectomy.
Traditionally, the conventional radiation treatment after lumpectomy are a series of treatments given Monday through Friday, five days a week over a six weeks time frame. With the accelerated partial breast radiation, we are able to just treat the lumpectomy bed, twice daily over one week. In doing so, we have a much shorter treatment course: one week compared to six weeks. We're able to spare more normal tissue of the breast.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America utilizes some of the most advanced radiation therapy tools available to treat breast cancer. In this video, radiation oncologist Dr. Oneita Taylor talks about a few of the leading-edge radiation treatments for breast cancer offered in our hospitals.