In addition to chemotherapy, physicians may advise a course of radiation therapy. St. Vincent Medical Center’s comprehensive Radiotherapy Department offers a variety of options that give physicians and patients important cancer treatment choices.
3-D Conformal Radiation Therapy (3-D CRT)
In this technologically advanced procedure, radiation oncologists use CT and/or MRI scans to precisely position radiation beams during treatment.
The information from the scans feeds directly into the radiotherapy planning computer so doctors can see the treatment area in 3 dimensions. The radiation oncologist is able to design a treatment plan in 3D so the radiation beams follow the shape of the tumor more precisely. With 3D conformal radiotherapy the radiation beam avoids healthy tissue as much as possible.
Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT)
Radiation oncologists at St. Vincent Medical Center use IMRT, with its sophisticated computer software, to deliver thousands of precisely shaped beams that target the tumor while sparing as much healthy tissue as possible.
By varying the levels of the IMRT beam’s power, therapists can treat tumors located near critical organs. Treatment planning systems and three-dimensional imaging technology help physicians and physicists pinpoint cancer cells.
St. Vincent Medical Center was the first community-based tertiary full-service hospital in Southern California to offer IMRT.