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SGRT: A New Frontier in Radiation Therapy

February 19, 2024

SGRT: A New Frontier in Radiation Therapy - featured image

Paving the way for innovative treatment technology in South Africa, Busamed Hillcrest Oncology Centre recently unveiled the first in-bore Surface Guided Radiation Therapy (SGRT) machine at the hospital.

Invented by Vision RT, Surface Guided Radiation Therapy (SGRT) is a contact-free technology that uses 3D cameras and computer vision to help ensure radiation therapy is delivered safely to cancer patients. SGRT is a rapidly growing technique that uses stereo vision technology to track patients’ surfaces in 3D, for both setup and motion management during radiotherapy.

SGRT uses the patient’s external surface to help ensure that the radiation dose is consistently applied in accordance with the treatment plan. This technology uses three camera units to monitor thousands of points on the patient’s skin.

According to Busamed Hillcrest radiation oncologist, Dr Ziad Seedat, as a comprehensive oncology centre, a full set of services are provided to cancer patients that includes medical oncology.
“Our radiotherapy department has state of the art equipment and is able to deliver state of the art treatment incorporating stereotactic therapy as well as image guided therapy with the latest addition of Surface Guided Radiation Therapy.”
He said SGRT is an addition to the existing technologies at Busamed Hillcrest Oncology Centre.

“The surface guidance has a number of additional advantages in terms of patient setup before treatment. It allows for patients to be set up without any markers, it also allows for the monitoring of patient treatment ensuring that patient movement is minimised to increase the accuracy of treatment.”

SGRT has a wide range of applications, including patient positioning with real-time feedback, patient monitoring throughout the treatment fraction, and motion management (as beam-gating in free-breathing or deep-inspiration breath-hold (DIBH)).

Special radiotherapy modalities such as accelerated partial breast irradiation, particle radiotherapy, and pediatrics are the most recent SGRT developments.
Speaking about the acquisition of the technology, Dr Seedat said Busamed Hillcrest Oncology Centre is constantly innovating to provide patients with the most advanced and accurate forms of treatment.

“We identified that surface guidance would be a useful addition to the equipment that we have. The machine we have was the first in the country of its type. It is about four times quicker in treatment delivery than older generation machines. This increases patient comfort and also ensures accuracy of treatment is increased.

“The combination of surface guidance with the additional accuracy it allows for, together with the speed of delivery on this platform means that we are able to deliver the most accurate treatment in terms of minimising side effects for patients and maximising the effect on the cancers we are treating.”

There are numerous publications that support its use in the treatment of breast, brain, head and neck cancer, sarcoma, and other conditions.
In the case of the brain, data suggests that Surface Guided Radiation Therapy in SRS gives similar patient outcomes, with better patient comfort and fast treatment times, compared to other commonly-used, more invasive technologies.

Dr Seedat said the treatment can be applied to most cancers.
“The one area where we have a particular focus at the centre is in managing breast cancer, and the utilisation of the DIBH technique, treating in a particular phase of respiration, with SGRT, reduces the cardiac side effects of treatment significantly and so patients are afforded a safer treatment at this facility.”

For more information contact you can contact the Busamed Hillcrest Oncology centre on Tel: +27 31 492 4479.



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