How CyberKnife® Technology Can Treat Your Condition

How CyberKnife® Technology Can Treat Your Condition

In the past, tumor treatment often required invasive surgical procedures or numerous rounds of radiation therapy. But the cutting-edge technology used in the CyberKnife® System makes it possible to perform even the most complex tumor treatments more accurately and less invasively.

CyberKnife can deliver high doses of targeted radiation to tumors or lesions all over the body — even in the brain and spine. This revolutionary approach provides long-term cancer control, requires fewer treatments, and comes with fewer side effects.

Dr. Arien Smith at the Brain and Spine Institute of New York and New Jersey relies on CyberKnife to treat tumors and lesions affecting nerves, bones, and other tissues in the spinal cord and spinal column. If you have a tumor or lesion, here’s how CyberKnife can help.

How CyberKnife works

CyberKnife performs radiation therapy. Two unique characteristics set this system apart from other systems that deliver radiation: a linear accelerator and a robot.

Linear accelerator 

The linear accelerator, or linac, sits on a robot. This device delivers the radiation — high-energy electrons — needed to destroy tumors and lesions.

The robot

The robot holding the linac has real-time image guidance. This advanced technology enables it to precisely locate treatment areas all over the body and follow them, while dosing them with radiation from multiple angles. 

Together, the linac and robot can move and bend all over a patient, so it can treat even hard-to-reach areas. And, when the treatment begins, CyberKnife delivers precise and more concentrated amounts of energy, which minimizes radiation exposure to healthy tissue in the area.

In many cases, CyberKnife can treat tumors in 1-5 sessions. CyberKnife can even provide treatment options for people with inoperable or surgically complex tumors.

The advantages of CyberKnife 

CyberKnife offers numerous benefits, especially because of its real-time image guidance. This technology recognizes motion in the patient, whether they cough, breathe, or have gases or fluids moving from organ to organ.

Because the CyberKnife System can accommodate patient and tumor movement, it can continuously deliver radiation to the target, even as it moves. When combined with its precise and concentrated delivery system, it offers a revolutionary approach to treating a wide range of cancer types all over the body.

At the Brain and Spine Institute of New York and New Jersey, Dr. Smith uses CyberKnife for all forms of tumors — both benign (noncancerous) and malignant (cancerous) — in the spinal column and spinal cord. This includes slow-growing cancerous tumors, aggressive and fast-growing tumors, and metastatic tumors that began elsewhere in the body and spread to the spine.

What to expect from CyberKnife treatment

CyberKnife treatments last 30-90 minutes, and you can go home the same day. The entire process is completely painless and doesn’t require any anesthesia.

During your session, you simply lie on the treatment table and wait for the robotic arm to move into position over your tumor or lesion. After detecting the treatment site, it delivers radiation to the area without CyberKnife ever touching your body.

Unlike other tumor treatments, CyberKnife comes with minimal — if any — side effects. You can often resume regular activities following your treatment session. 

Would you like to learn if CyberKnife technology is a possible treatment option for you? Contact the Brain and Spine Institute of New York and New Jersey location nearest you by calling or scheduling an appointment online today.

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