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Published on January 27, 2014

Billings Clinic to offer new, non-invasive surgery for the brain Gamma Knife® PerfexionTM offers advanced technology for stereotactic radiosurgery

Billings, MT — Billings Clinic announces the arrival of the most advanced tool for non-invasive treatment of the brain, Elekta’s Leksell Gamma Knife® PerfexionTM. The Perfexion offers state-of-the-art treatment for patients with a wide spectrum of brain tumors and other brain abnormalities. With more than 275 institutions worldwide offering Gamma Knife therapy, Billings Clinic is the only location within a five state region to offer this advanced service.

The Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion platform is not a knife at all, and no incisions are made. Gamma Knife is often an appropriate alternative to standard brain surgery when the tumor or abnormality is too hard to reach with standard neurosurgery, a patient is not healthy enough to undergo standard surgery or a patient prefers a less invasive treatment. Treatment is delivered as a single, high-dose of radiation to small and critically-located intracranial structures using nearly 200 very small beams of radiation. This allows for the most precise treatment of lesions while minimizing risk of damage to healthy tissues surrounding the target. Gamma Knife radiosurgery is used to treat both benign and malignant tumors, as well as select functional disorders. Most patients are treated comfortably during a single outpatient session.

“The Gamma Knife is the most proven means of performing intracranial stereotactic radiosurgery and is the single most trusted and utilized solution for treating brain disorders without invasive surgery, “ said John Schallenkamp, MD, Department Chair of Radiation Oncology at the Billings Clinic Cancer Center. “Our neurosciences team including my colleagues in neurosurgery, medical oncology, neurology and rehabilitative medicine are delighted that we are able to offer this cutting-edge technology to our patients who will benefit from this high level of technology.”

Billings Clinic utilizes a specially trained team of physicians and clinicians including neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists and medical physicists to plan, review and implement the Gamma Knife treatment for each patient. Coordinated care delivery is facilitated through a dedicated nurse navigation team.

The alternative to treatment with Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion is traditional surgery, which involves certain risks. In many cases, it is impossible to surgically treat tumors that are deep-seated or situated close to sensitive parts of the brain such as the brainstem or motor and visual cortices. The patient may also remain in the hospital intensive care unit for several days and in the neurosurgical or rehabilitative unit for a further 2 to 3 weeks. The convalescence period may be several more months.

“This state-of-the-art system will enable us to treat patients with the most advanced radiosurgery techniques using the most clinically efficient processes in the world,” said Mark Piedra, MD, neurosurgeon at Billings Clinic. “The Gamma Knife Perfexion provides us with tremendous versatility and precision for customizing treatments according to the specifics of each patient’s case.”

Non-Invasive Surgery Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion has received considerable exposure as a treatment alternative for many patients. Patients and caregivers alike are attracted by its non-invasive nature, single-session outpatient procedure, and documented clinical results. The patient usually leaves the hospital the same day and returns to daily life.

About Elekta Today, Elekta solutions in oncology and neurosurgery are used in over 5,000 hospitals globally, and every day more than 100,000 patients receive diagnosis, treatment or follow-up with the help of a solution from Elekta. Elekta is a global human care company pioneering significant innovations and clinical solutions for treating cancer and brain disorders. Elekta provides intelligent and resource-efficient technologies that improve, prolong and save patient lives.