Sidney Health Center’s Cancer Care is pleased to announce
the expansion of its conventional radiation therapy to include Stereotactic
Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT) and Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) with the
addition of a full-time medical physicist on staff.
Advanced treatment programs like SBRT and SRS require a
medical physicist to be onsite for these treatments. Tim Stack is a medical
physicist with 25 years of experience who has worked remotely for Sidney Health
Center for the past six years. Stack oversees the technical side of radiation
therapy, such as dosimetry treatment planning, dosage, machine stability
mechanisms, and quality control.
In January 2011, Sidney Health Center added radiation
therapy to its line of outpatient oncology services with the installation of a
TomoTherapy Hi-Art radiation treatment system. Unlike traditional radiation
therapy equipment, TomoTherapy combines CT scan imaging with its cancer
treatment delivery, ensuring the most accurate radiation treatment with the
fewest side effects. In addition, the TomoTherapy platform provides the
capability to upgrade and provide SBRT and SRS treatment programs.
With conventional therapy, radiation is delivered in
relatively small doses over the course of several weeks, with patients
receiving daily treatments during that time. On the other hand, SBRT allows
physicians to deliver a higher dose of radiation over the course of two to five
Dr. Lyle Harrison is Sidney Health Center’s Radiation
Oncologist who works with the medical physicist to develop a radiation plan
that ensures safe exposure to normal structures. Each SBRT session takes 30 to
60 minutes to complete, and unlike more invasive therapies, the patient leaves
each treatment free of significant pain or side effects. Treatments do not have
to be administered on consecutive days, but the entire course of therapy is
usually concluded within 10 days.
Typically, SBRT is used to treat small tumors in the head or
lungs without damaging any surrounding organs. Secondly, SRS is a non-surgical
radiation therapy used to treat functional abnormalities and small tumors of
the brain. SRS can deliver precisely-targeted radiation in fewer high-dose
treatments than traditional therapy, which can help reserve healthy tissue.
Prior to adding SBRT and SRS to Sidney Health Center’s
Cancer Care services, cancer patients would have to travel out of the area to
receive this type of sophisticated treatment. This new technology was made
possible through funding from the Foundation for Community Care as well as
fundraising events like Light the Park and Richland Rangers Shut Out Cancer.
To find out more about Sidney Health Center’s Cancer Care
services including chemotherapy, IV therapy, medical oncology and radiation
oncology, visit the website at www.sidneyhealth.org/service/cancer-care
or call the Cancer Care Suite at 406-488-2504. The cancer care team is
comprised of oncologists, specialists, nurses, pharmacists and therapists who
take the time to understand and guide area cancer patients through their care