What is Radiosurgery?
Radiosurgery is a radiation treatment used to treat
small brain tumours and blood vessel malformations,
and occasionally to treat certain painful conditions
and movement disorders. Radiosurgery is not surgery
at all. Rather it is a special form of radiation therapy.
It is a closed, bloodless procedure using highly focused
radiation to treat precisely targeted tissue. Mr. D'Urso
uses a Linear Accelerator (LINAC) radiosurgery system
at the William Buckley Radiotherapy Centre. Mr. D'Urso
helped establish the multidisciplinary AVM clinic at
the Centre, where patients are seen monthly. The clinic
has two neurosurgeons, a radiation oncologist, and an
interventional neuroradiologist. Patients at this clinic
are bulk-billed to Medicare.
The radiosurgery technology is also referred to as
"Stereotactic Radiosurgery" (SRS) for single
treatments, or is referred to as "Stereotactic
Radiotherapy" (SRT) when a treatment is spread
across several visits. An alternative system to LINAC
is referred to as the "Gamma Knife". Mr. D'Urso
does not utilise Gamma Knife in his practice.
What is the treatment used for radiosurgery?
This treatment may be used as part of the overall management
strategy for a brain tumour without prior surgery or
after surgical biopsy or partial removal. The purpose
of radiation therapy is to shrink the tumour mass by
destroying tumour cells. Tumours often suitable for
radiosurgery include metastatic brain tumours and primary
brain tumours as well as acoustic neuromas. Radiosurgery
can also be used to block and slowly shrink malformed
blood vessels of the brain. Unique computer programs
control the precise position of the radiation during
treatment, allowing the treatment to be directed to
the abnormal tissue with as small a margin of surrounding
normal tissue as possible.
How is radiosurgery performed?
Radiosurgery is most often performed on an outpatient
basis. Generally, the entire procedure is completed
in 8 or 9 hours. The actual radiation treatment is less
than one hour. Most patients may resume normal activities
the next day.
Radiosurgery can successfully treat many different
brain conditions, both benign and malignant. These include
vascular malformations and functional disorders, as
well as the following:
- acoustic neuroma
- brain AVM
- pineal tumors
- pituitary adenomas
- trigeminal neuralgia
- vestibular schwannoma
here to visit The William Buckland Radiotherapy Centre
here to visit the Brain Lab web site
here for detail on the technology of Radiosurgery
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