The pandemic caused by covid-19 has indirectly affected many pathologies, including cancer. The collapse of hospitals, especially at the beginning of the pandemic, has meant the delay in cancer diagnoses and treatments. Having a delay in a cancer diagnosis means that the tumor is detected at a more advanced stage and that there is a much greater chance of metastasis.
Also, this makes the treatment have to be longer, complex and less effective. Sadly, if we talk specifically about a six-month delay, in some type of tumor it can be fatal. The delay of one month in cancer treatment (surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy) can increase mortality by 6-13% and it continues to increase the longer treatment is delayed.
The general director of GenesisCare in Spain, Brendan Capell, underlines the importance of continuing with the treatments, «your oncologist will offer you the best and safest option. For example, if surgery has been postponed, in some cases radiation therapy may help control the tumor until it can be operated on and therefore prevent it from getting worse. ‘ And despite the situation, GenesisCare has seen about 6,000 new patients since the pandemic began.
Focusing on the breast cancer, the company has three innovative radiation treatments key to this type of tumor: DIBH, SGRT sin tatuajes y FAST Mama, thanks to which the health and quality of life of patients has been considerably improved.
Specifically, deep sustained inspiration (DIBH) is a technique that protects the heart when treating breast cancer, especially the one on the left. At the moment when the breast is farthest from the heart, thanks to the sustained deep inspiration, it is when the radiotherapyThis reduces the exposure of the heart to radiation therapy and reduces the chances of subsequent heart disease.
Another technique, pioneered by GenesisCare in Spain, is the SGRT (surface-guided radiation therapy) without tattoos. The patient is repositioned, guided by the reconstructed surface from the treatment planning CT scan. This technology offers sub-millimeter precision in patient repositioning, enables constant monitoring during treatment, and stops radiation if the patient moves outside the allowed range.
Thanks to this, tattoos on the skin of patients are avoided, a very positive development. Finally, the FAST Mama treatment performs the treatments with ultrashort schemes, that is, it is administered in 5 sessions, with aesthetic results and disease control over 5 years equal to the current standard treatment of 15 fractions. All three techniques can be combined so that a breast treatment can be performed in five sessions, without tattoos and protecting the heart.
Regarding the treatment of prostate cancer, GenesisCare uses the SBRT (stereotactic body radiation therapy) with spacer. This treatment is performed in just five days, instead of the usual 28-30 sessions (depending on the stage of the tumor) and is accompanied with a spacer to protect the rectum from infection. radiation and reduce possible effects such as intestinal, urinary and sexual dysfunction
And regarding the skin cancer, no melanoma, GenesisCare uses the high precision technology radiotherapy VMAT (volumetric modulated arcotherapy). This one treatment it is a good option in cases in which the tumor is located in large areas of skin, areas of difficult access in which grafts or reconstruction are difficult, or when the patient’s comorbidities prevent surgery.
Telephone: 965 21 00 55
Direction: Plaza del, Placa Dr. Gómez Ulla, 15, 03013 Alicante
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.