For Some Patients INTRABEAM Could be a One-Shot Alternative to Six Weeks of Radiation after Lumpectomy
April 10, 2013
For the first time, breast cancer patients in the
area have an opportunity to skip the traditional six weeks of radiation after breast cancer surgery and get just one dose in the operating room immediately after having their cancer removed. Making this possible is INTRABEAM Intraoperative Radiotherapy (IORT) a technology now being offered to patients at both
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital
MedStar Washington Hospital Center
, 68, of
had a one centimeter lump in her breast that was found by a mammogram. She had a lumpectomy in
with INTRABEAM IORT given right in the operating room while she was still asleep. Mary's lymph nodes were negative for cancer, making her a perfect candidate for INTRABEAM IORT. "What attracted me to the IORT is that it's a one shot deal," said Mary. "Six or seven weeks of radiation would have been burdensome for me and working full time, all that travel would have been a problem."
"We're offering INTRABEAM to a select group of lumpectomy patients based on their age, the size and type of tumor," said
Shawna Willey, MD
, director of the MedStar Regional Breast Health Program. "This is encouraging news for patients who now can wake up from breast surgery and know their radiation treatment is complete instead of facing six weeks of up to 30 radiation treatments."
Up until now, the standard treatment for those having a lumpectomy involved waiting four weeks after the initial surgery and then starting a five to six week whole-breast radiation regimen.