OSF HealthCare will soon be able to provide the most advanced radiation therapy available in La Salle County. Officials announced Friday the addition of a Discovery IQ PET/CT scanner and a TrueBeam linear accelerator to the Radiation Oncology department at OSF HealthCare St. Elizabeth Medical Center.
To accommodate the new technology, Vissering Construction will add 3,800 square feet to the existing Fox River Cancer Center facility. Located on the campus of OSF St. Elizabeth, the center is home to services offered through OSF St. Elizabeth’s Radiation Oncology program as well as Illinois CancerCare.
“This technology is a game changer in the fight against cancer,” stated Dotty Peare, the hospital’s director of diagnostic imaging. “These advancements will ensure patients will not have to leave the region to get the best cancer care possible.”
OSF St. Elizabeth Radiation Oncology will be the first local provider to offer the TrueBeam radiotherapy system with the PerfectPitch six degrees of freedom couch, the latest advancement in image-guided radiotherapy technology from Varian Medical Systems. This system utilizes arc therapy, a 360-degree treatment, allowing faster treatments than with the conventional fixed beam of radiation.
“This system provides real-time imaging, allowing the therapy team to more accurately direct higher doses of radiation to the area of interest while synchronizing the treatment with the patient’s breathing,” stated Peare. “This intelligent automation decreases the amount of steps needed for imaging, positioning, and treatment — which results in less time the patient has to be on the treatment table.”
The Discovery scanner is a PET nuclear medicine scanner and a CT scanner in one machine. The two scans are obtained and fused together to provide the radiologist both anatomy and organ function in one image to help manage the patient’s condition and properly phase the treatment.
“This is a major upgrade and will help us provide state-of-the-art treatment to patients,” said Anthony Zalduendo, M.D., radiation oncologist at OSF St. Elizabeth. “Patients can expect first-rate cancer care involving less toxicity by precisely localizing the tumor to provide a treatment that is easier to tolerate.”
The project, slated for completion in September, is currently underway. No disruption to patient care is anticipated during the construction process. For more information about cancer care services offered, visit osfsaintelizabeth.org.