At UT Southwestern Medical Center, we use state-of-the-art machines to deliver radiation, including intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT). Our goal is to deliver the best possible treatment while keeping our patients as comfortable as possible.
In addition, we are one of the leading facilities in the world for the treatment of tumors using stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SAbR)/stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). Our stereotactic treatment technologies include Gamma Knife®, which is used exclusively for cranial tumors, CyberKnife®, TrueBeam®, and VersaHD™– some of the most high-tech equipment available in the U.S.
With the help of computer-aided treatment planning, each machine can deliver a high dose of radiation more precisely to a tumor, thereby sparing surrounding healthy tissue. Other advanced technologies such as VMAT, Align RT, ExacTrac, and onboard imaging are selectively used to optimize the accuracy and speed of tumor targeting.
Specialists are available in pediatric care, partial breast irradiation, brachytherapy, total skin electron beam therapy, total body irradiation, radioimmunotherapy, and re-treatment of previous radiation patients.
Accuray® CyberKnife M6
UT Southwestern was one of the first facilities in the nation to use Accuray’s CyberKnife when it was introduced in the 1990s. We now offer the latest generation, the CyberKnife M6, which has a robotic couch and offers real-time patient tracking and motion correction capabilities.
The CyberKnife uses a linear accelerator mounted on a robotic arm to focus beams of radiation at a tumor from multiple directions. Historically, the CyberKnife was used to treat a small niche of primary and metastatic brain and spine tumors, but due to enhancements in its accuracy we’ve expanded its use to other areas of the body, including tumors of the head and neck, base of skull, breast, lung, pancreas, liver, and prostate. Because CyberKnife radiation delivery is so precise and the risk for toxicity is so minimal, we’re also able to use it treat children.
Benefits of the CyberKnife include:
- The only robotic radiosurgery system offering highly precise, nonsurgical treatment for tumors and lesions anywhere in the body through real-time tumor tracking and motion management. Because of this, patients are able to receive treatment with the maximum dose while minimizing healthy tissue exposure.
- With its patient-focused design, the CyberKnife offers soothing environmental elements while patients lie comfortably and breathe normally.
Elekta Gamma Knife Icon – Precise Cranial Radiosurgery
UT Southwestern is home to the sixth and latest generation of the Gamma Knife: the Icon, which offers novel frameless treatments as well as traditional frame-based treatments. Schedule an appointment or learn more about Gamma Knife.
UT Southwestern has the only GammaPod in Texas. It is the first stereotactic body radiation therapy system optimized for treating breast cancer. Schedule an appointment or learn more about GammaPod.
Varian TrueBeams and VitalBeams
Our TrueBeam and VitalBeam linear accelerators (also known as “linacs”) are versatile radiation therapy machines that can treat cancers throughout the body using advanced methods such as image guidance, radiosurgery, intensity-modulated radiotherapy, stereotactic body radiotherapy, and RapidArc beam delivery.
Their benefits include:
- Combining respiratory gating, real-time tracking, imaging, and high-dose rate treatment delivery to treat tumors with advanced speed and accuracy
Our Elekta linacs are fitted with Agility treatment heads that can deliver advanced stereotactic treatments as well as conventional radiotherapy throughout the body, including the brain.
- High treatment accuracy and high-dose rates, which permits shorter delivery times, additional treatment options, and advanced motion management
- The ability to treat challenging regions of the body that were previously inaccessible
- With the Versa, enhanced motion management due to its high dose rate and advanced IGRT
Some of our linear accelerators have been fitted with add-on technologies that are used to enhance treatment in certain situations:
- BRAINLAB ExacTrac®: In-room system for monitoring patient position via stereo X-ray imaging of bony anatomy in the spine and/or skull
- Vision RT AlignRT®: System that uses light, rather than radiation, to monitor the patient surface and thereby ensure accurate positioning before and during treatment
- Elekta Active Breathing Coordinator: Assists patient in achieving precise breath hold volumes and thus immobilizes the chest and thorax in a consistent manner
- Varian PerfectPitch 6 DoF couch: Robotic table that permits six degrees of freedom in positioning the patient for treatment, rather than only the four degrees available on traditional tables