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CodeBlue – Published 6 May 2021

Beacon Hospital’s Varian TrueBeam Radiosurgery with HyperArc system enables eradication or inactivation of tumor lesions with minimal damage to surrounding tissue.

The TrueBeam Radiosurgery with HyperArc system is a radiotherapy machine using advanced stereotactic technology that delivers a much faster and more accurate radiation dose, as compared to a conventional radiotherapy system.

Consultant clinical oncologist and medical director of Beacon Hospital, Dr Mohamed Ibrahim Abdul Wahid, explained that the Varian TrueBeam radiosurgery with HyperArc system enables a very fine beam of high radiation to focus on the tumour to eradicate it, while minimising damage to the surrounding tissue.

Consultant neurosurgeon Dr Lee Foo Chiang said that for brain tumors, the procedure is called stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS), a non-surgical radiation therapy without making a surgical incision or using general anesthesia.

Besides that, Dr Lee said that this state-of-the-art technology acquired by the Beacon Hospital in 2019 can be used to combat both intracranial and extracranial brain tumours.

“Besides treating metastatic brain tumours, SRS can also be used to treat benign tumours like meningiomas, acoustic neuromas, arteriovenous malformation, trigeminal neuralgia etc.”

The TrueBeam system generates high-quality 3D images of the tumour 60 per cent faster. These images are then used to fine-tune a patient’s position prior and during treatment.

Beacon Hospital consultant neurosurgeon Dr Chee Chee Pin said that most brain tumour treatments take only about 20 minutes using the HyperArc technology, including the time taken to position the patient and verify the images.

The treatment gives big doses at a very small period of time, within five or 10 consecutive days, which gives an advantage of preventing the tumour from having the time to repair itself.

The consultant oncologist from Beacon Hospital, Dr Tho Lye Mun, shared that one of his former patients, who held a top position in a multinational company, managed to maintain excellent brain function after undergoing Varian TrueBeam radiosurgery. “He had stage 4 lung cancer, which had spread to the brain.

So, we used stereotactic radiosurgery to target the tumour and kill it while avoiding the rest of his brain. Thus, he was able to maintain memory, thought processes and function, so he can not only continue to work, but also be able to have a good quality of life with his family,” Dr Tho said.

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