AccuBoost – Image guided breast irradiation
A new option when making an important decision
Women with early stage breast cancer increasingly choose to treat the cancer and save their breast. Breast conservation therapy (BCT) starts with the surgical removal of cancerous tissue in a procedure known as lumpectomy. Lumpectomy is followed by daily sessions of radiation therapy to the whole breast for six weeks. Whole breast irradiation (WBI) is widely accepted as the “gold standard” for breast radiotherapy based on over three decades of experience. The BCT protocol also requires additional localized radiation, known as the “boost” dose, aimed only at the tissue surrounding the tumor bed. The combination of surgery and completion of radiation therapy has been effective in preventing cancer recurrence. Numerous studies show that women with early stage disease have a clear option to preserve the breast and fight off the cancer.
The benefits of AccuBoost®
- Accurate targeting of the dose
- Non-invasive radiation delivery in a simple outpatient procedure
- Lower skin dose and skin complications
- Less toxicity and better cosmetic results
- Radiation is delivered parallel to the chest wall sparing unintentional exposure to the heart and lungs
- Conformal radiation field matches the target size, shape, and location
- Uniform and homogeneous radiation field
- Excellent reliability and reproducibility in patient positioning and process control
- Less exposure to healthy tissue allows for better cosmetic outcomes
AccuBoost’s strive for perfection
AccuBoost® is the latest innovation in breast radiotherapy that enables your radiation oncologist to achieve the goal of targeting the boost dose to the lumpectomy cavity margin – the tissue that is the most likely site of future recurrence. Treatment enabled by AccuBoost technology combines a noninvasive method of delivering a well focused beam with the power of real-time image guidance to target the radiation dose accurately and reliably to the surgical excision site (target tissue). Additionally, the AccuBoost process strongly limits unintentional exposure to otherwise healthy tissue and minimizes radiation-related side effects.
Q. Why breast conservation therapy?
A. Numerous published reports indicate that patients with early stage breast cancer who choose the lumpectomy option followed by a full course of radiation therapy that includes a boost dose, have as good a chance as those electing mastectomy for cancer free survival while preserving their breast.
Q. Why is a “boost” dose necessary?
A. The boost dose is an important ingredient of the full course of radiation therapy and is delivered to the tissue adjacent to the surgical excision site, a region from which most recurrences originate. The added boost dose to the surgical margin has been shown to provide additional protection against recurrence.
Q. What makes the AccuBoost process unique from other boost delivery techniques?
A. The AccuBoost process is the latest innovation which includes real-time imaging techniques that your doctor can use to target the boost dose to the intended site. In addition, using the AccuBoost Applicators gives your doctor the ability to deliver a conformal dose only to the target tissue, sparing unintended exposure to health tissue.
Q. Why is AccuBoost therapy the right choice?
A. The AccuBoost process, including real-time image guidance, allows your doctor to concentrate the radiation to the required site with minimal exposure to surrounding healthy tissue and neighboring organs. You should ask your radiation oncologist about the benefits of the AccuBoost process and how they apply to you.
Q. What are the side effects of this treatment?
A. Clinical publications have shown that the AccuBoost process is associated with fewer side effects and it lessens radiation related complications. The noninvasive nature of the AccuBoost process eliminates treatment related infection and drainage issues associated with invasive radiotherapy.
Q. Will I glow in the dark?
A. The lumpectomy site is exposed to radiation only during the visit to the hospital. No traces of radioactivity are present anywhere in, or on, the patient after the session is over. The patient is free to follow routine social life without the fear of causing harm or contaminating others.
Q. Will health insurance cover the cost?
A. Radiation boost and image guidance to target the dose are accepted procedures for the treatment of breast cancer and are covered by most plans. Specific coverage for the AccuBoost procedure will depend on your individual healthcare plan.