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South Sound Gamma Knife Introduces Icon™

Posted by: South Sound Gamma Knife ● July 12, 2018

Stereotactic radiosurgery for non-invasive treatment of brain disorders

Tacoma, Wash.- (June 29, 2018) South Sound Gamma Knife at St. Joseph in Tacoma now offers the Gamma Knife® Icon™, currently the only installation between Seattle and San Francisco, to treat virtually any location in the brain without traditional surgery. Gamma Knife is widely recognized as the gold standard for stereotactic radiosurgery in the brain. The new Icon provides ultra-precise delivery, preserves healthy tissue, and expands treatment possibilities – meaning more patients are now candidates for Gamma Knife.

“Gamma Knife treatment benefits patients with malignant and benign brain tumors, vascular malformations, trigeminal neuralgia and essential tremor,” said Marc Goldman, MD, a member of the South Sound Gamma Knife neuro-oncology team and neurosurgeon at Neurosurgery Northwest – Tacoma, part of Franciscan Medical Group. “Gamma Knife is an excellent option for many patients whose age or medical condition precludes traditional surgery.”

Despite the name, Gamma Knife is actually a bladeless procedure. There is no incision in the skull so the risk for complications is minimal. Patients receive treatment and go home the same day.

“Gamma Knife differs from conventional radiation therapy because patients receive highly targeted radiation delivered to a specific focal point in the brain,” said Herbert Wang, MD, South Sound Gamma Knife team member and radiation oncologist at Tacoma/Valley Radiation Oncology Centers. “Gamma Knife can often eliminate the need for whole brain radiation, and as a result, the side effects commonly associated with traditional radiation therapy.”

Gamma Knife Icon focuses up to 192 converging beams of high-dose Cobalt60-generated photons on a computer-mapped target. Sophisticated, three-dimensional treatment planning provides exquisite precision, making it possible to administer a high radiation dose to the lesion without damaging surrounding healthy tissue.

The Icon frameless option allows single-dose administration or a fractionated approach. Fractionation, or extending treatment over more than one session, makes it possible to treat larger tumors and new or recurring brain metastases. It can shorten session times, making treatment more comfortable for patients. The Icon also makes it possible to treat previously difficult-to-access tumors, including lesions abutting critical areas, such as where the optic nerves cross at the base of the brain.

The frame option remains a leading technology. It will continue to be used for patients with tremor and trigeminal neuralgia, and other cases where frame technology is optimal.

“We are committed to using the best technology to maintain and improve our patients’ quality of life,” said Randy Sorum, MD, medical director for South Sound Gamma Knife and radiation oncologist at Tacoma/Valley Radiation Oncology Centers. “Gamma Knife can be an effective, non-invasive treatment option for many patients.”

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