CyberKnife: Breast Cancer Treatment Takes Less Time & Reduces Risk of Heart & Lung Damage
“I am very happy that Cyberknife was an option for me,” says Penny. “The treatment was 45 minutes a day for 5 days and the staff made sure I was comfortable laying on the CyberKnife table. My alternative would have been 4-to-5 weeks of regular radiation so CyberKnife Radiation Therapy was much more bearable.”
Traditionally Breast Cancer patients undergo Whole Breast Radiation Therapy which takes approximately 5-to-6 weeks, 5 days a week. While life saving, radiation therapy changes the breast tissue permanently and can affect and damage some of the surrounding body structures, like the lungs and heart.
CyberKnife delivers what is called, Stereotactic Accelerated Partial Breast Irradiation (SAPBI) treatment, which is a much more pinpointed radiation therapy. It precisely targets and treats only the tumor site, greatly reducing the risk of side effects and damage, leaving surrounding healthy tissue unharmed.
Radiation Oncologist, Dr. Heidi Memmel says, “Patients who are eligible usually have stage 1 breast cancer, are over 50 years of age and have had a lumpectomy.”
Penny was diagnosed with breast cancer in September 2018 at the age of 68. Following her routine mammogram exam, she was told the doctors found a lump and needed to perform a biopsy.
Penny met Dr. Heidi Memmel, co-director of the Caldwell Breast Center and breast surgeon at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill.
“When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, she has the opportunity to choose between total removal of a breast (mastectomy) and breast conserving surgery (lumpectomy) followed by radiation,” says Dr. Memmel. “Lumpectomy with radiation is effective for people with only one site of cancer in the breast, and it helps reduce the risk of cancer coming back by about 50%-60%.”
“Treatment for breast cancer is not only advancing, but also making it more tolerable for patients,” says Dr. Memmel. “Candidates for Cyberknife treatment should consider this option which has a faster recovery and fewer sessions.”
To learn more about CyberKnife for the treatment of Breast Cancer talk to our experts at CyberKnife Miami 305-279-2900 & go to our website now – www.cyberknifemiami.com
The statistics are high: Breast cancer affects approximately 237,000 women in the United States each year and remains the second leading cancer and cause of death in women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Many people have a family member or someone they know who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Advances in treatment have increased and significantly improved the quality of life, but every diagnosis is a personal struggle.