IGRT and IMRT
Precision is the key to destroying cancer cells. Baptist Health Louisville is leading the way, the first in Louisville to offer a linear accelerator with both kV and MV Cone Beam (CAT scan) image-guidance and intensity-modulated radiation therapy technology.
This exceptional pairing of equipment – called Image-Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) and Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) -- offers Baptist Health Radiation Center patients a tracking system with pinpoint accuracy, unparalleled radiation beam shaping and dose control, and the ability to make adjustments for even minor patient or tumor movement.
Because of this, Baptist Health Louisville can now treat many cancers that were thought untreatable because of location, size, or proximity to organs or other vulnerable surrounding tissue. IMRT is typically used for breast, prostate and head and neck cancers.
The tumor can be more precisely targeted by accounting for the possibility of patient motion both within and between treatment fractions. IGRT enables more precise alignment of the beam to the tumor. These technological advances enable us to make adjustments for tumor movement and even for breathing – delivering radiation doses only when the patient is between breaths. Alignment accuracy is within two millimeters.
IGRT technology can show where the tumor is at any given time during the treatment and from treatment to treatment on different days. IGRT looks not just at two-dimensional, flat images – it looks at them three-dimensionally, which enables the most accurate treatment possible.
The IMRT technology is a treatment technique that uses small beams of radiation of varying intensities that can be aimed at the tumor from many angles, conforming to the shape of the tumor and sparing healthy surrounding tissue.
Besides adding the latest technology to its Radiation Center, Baptist Health Louisville has increased the center’s creature comforts as well. After seeking input and some “sit-testing” from patients, new sofas and soft armchairs were purchased for the reception area and arranged in cozy group settings to make the wait more comfortable for patients, their family and friends.
Baptist Health Louisville added 2,000 square feet to the Radiation Center to accommodate this third linear accelerator that is equipped with IMRT and IGRT, supplementing two others with IMRT and three-dimensional conformal radiation capability.
The expansion enhances Baptist Health Louisville's ability to continue to provide state-of-the-art, quality service on an ongoing basis to all patients.