New BeamView features from Siemens improve port film imaging for radiation

Concord 23 October 2000Siemens Oncology Care Systems Group has introduced advanced tools to enhance the BeamView Electronic Portal Imaging Device for radiation therapy. The new features, that will make image acquisition more automatic, include patient identification and reference image display, image display to ensure accurate patient positioning, the ability to send images via e-mail, and DICOM compatibility. These technology advancements can significantly improve efficiency, quality of care, and reliability for cancer treatment clinics.

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According to Mack Roach III, MD, who is associate professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco, "The possibility of on-line portal imaging with sufficient resolution to allow identification of gold marker seeds placed into the prostate, combined with rapid e-mail delivery directly to the physician's desktop computer represents a major step forward."

BeamView improves the quality of patient treatments by assuring accurate placement of radiation beam, blocks, and field alignment. The BeamView system is easy to utilise. Digital images of the treatment port are quickly captured and can be displayed automatically throughout each fraction without the need of operator intervention. After acquisition, images can also be automatically stored to hard disk or sent to other platforms for review or processing. Patient positioning errors made evident by the BeamView system may be corrected before continuing the treatment, which results in more accurate dose delivery to the planned volume.

The e-mail option with BeamView allows images to be sent through a regular e-mail system so that physicians are able to review these images anywhere, anytime, saving time and improving work efficiency. Automatic patient set-up and reference image display option also increases productivity because patient information appears automatically when a treatment field is being downloaded in PrimeView accelerator console software. Advanced image-processing techniques give a virtually instant display of enhanced images. Support is available for producing both composite image and a verification image for each segment of an Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) treatment with the SIMTEC Delivery System.

Dr. Luc Beaulieu, head of the medical physics research group at the Service de Radio Oncologie du Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Quebec (CHUQ, Hotel-Dieu de Quebec) commented, "There has been strong clinical acceptance of BeamView at Hotel-Dieu de Quebec since it was first used for set-up verification of breast treatment fields. Over the years, it was found that proven sites, such as breast and prostate, now rely almost exclusively on electronic portal imaging devices for set-up verification, which makes this important step easier and quicker than taking standard port films."

Patrick Boyle, group vice president of Siemens Oncology Care Systems noted that Siemens continually strives to develop imaging capabilities with use of emerging technologies which will greatly facilitate the capabilities of cancer care providers. Siemens Oncology Care Systems Group manufactures and develops a wide range of radiation therapy products for the global oncology market. The company forms part of Siemens Medical Engineering Group in Erlangen, Germany, one of the largest suppliers of health care services in the world. More information about cancer therapy with Siemens equipment is available in the VMW October 2000 article St. Jude Children's Hospital offers specialised and safe radiation treatment to little tots under three.


Leslie Versweyveld

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