High Dose Rate (HDR) Radiation Therapy is now available in Waldorf
High-dose-rate remote after loaded brachytherapy (HDR) is a treatment available for women with either gynecologic or breast cancer. This treatment is faster, more convenient, and more comfortable than the traditional low-dose-rate (LDR) approach. Uncommon in a community setting, HDR is currently available in the Waldorf office of CPRCC. For more information, please see
The Chesapeake Potomac Regional Cancer Center (CPRCC) at Waldorf is equipped with a "Synergy" linear accelerator manufactured by Elekta. It is a new generation of radiation treatment machines combining features of advanced linear accelerators and CT scanners. The truly unique system, first of a kind in Southern Maryland and Prince George County, allows for treating patients, verifying position of the tumor (target) with real-time 3D CT images, and making instant adjustments simultaneously. The "Synergy" is capable of providing extremely accurate delivery of the prescribed dose of radiation to the tumor site while sparing normal tissue.
Due to breathing motions and multiple other reasons the position of the tumor is constantly changing, making it important to identify the location of the tumor at the time of treatment delivery.
Elekta designed "Synergy" to overcome the challenge of changing tumor location. A CT device mounted directly on the linear accelerator acquires images immediately before patient treatment with the patient in the treatment position. This allows for accurately locating the tumor and making any necessary shifts in patient position before a treatment is started. Such a method of treatment delivery is called Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT). Three-dimensional image guidance is particularly important for the patients receiving the most conformal type of radiotherapy - intensity modulation radiation treatment (IMRT). "Synergy" gives an opportunity to change the initial treatment plan in the event the tumor shrinks, the patient loses weight, or for any other changing clinical circumstances. Adapting the treatment delivery to real-time needs brings radiation therapy to the next previously unachievable level of perfection - Adaptive Image Guided Radiation Therapy.
The CPRCC Center in Charlotte Hall is equipped with a Varian iX treatment machine capable of delivering high quality 3D and Intensity Modulated Radiation Treatments. This treatment platform is equipped with 120 leaf multi-leaf collimator, which shapes the radiation beam to carefully sculpt the radiation delivered to the target volume while sparing the nearby healthy tissue. Portal Vision Imager allows verification of the treatment set ups on a real-time basis. Coupled with fiducial markers (golden seeds) placed inside of the targeted organ Portal Vision produces different, but also an extremely efficient technique for IGRT, particularly well suited for prostate cancer patients. Both facilities are also equipped with an Ultrasound guidance system utilized for similar purposes as an alternative to CT or Portal Vision Imagers.
The process of the treatment starts with planning by the acquisition of CT images. A high-speed multi-slice large bore Seimens' CT simulator at the Charlotte Hall facility is networked to communicate with both facilities enabling an efficient and time-sensitive planning process. Both facilities are equipped with modern world-class treatment planning stations and "record and verify" systems providing the most sophisticated treatment plans utilizing 3D and IMRT design and quality assurance oversight of treatment machine performance. The treatment is provided under conditions of precise targeting, dose selection and with maximal protection of normal tissues.
Today the technical armament of CPRCC Centers is in line with the best facilities in the state of Maryland and USA. Our patients and their family may receive the same quality Radiation Therapy services locally, eliminating the inconvenience of a long daily commute to centers located in Baltimore, Annapolis, or Washington, D.C. for treatments, which may continue for 6 to 8 weeks. CPRCC will continue to be on the front-line of the technological revolution, bringing new opportunities to the local community. The citizens of Southern Maryland will no longer be required to travel outside the area for optimal radiation therapy services, since the best options have been brought close to their homes.