Weiss Memorial Hospital Unveils New Center for Radiation Oncology: Grand opening reveals new linear accelerator and radiation oncology unit
17 Oct 2011
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CHICAGO (Oct. 18, 2011) — Weiss Memorial Hospital opens the new Center for Radiation Oncology this month, featuring the most cutting-edge radiation technology available. Called a linear accelerator, or linac for short, this technology makes cancer treatment possible down to the millimeter. A $1 million grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity helped make this advancement possible.
“Our oncology facility now rivals any other in Chicago, offering our patients more options in their cancer care,” said Jeffrey Steinberg, M.D., F.A.C.S, CEO at Weiss. “We are committed to providing the best cancer care, so we will continue to strengthen the range of services available in our community.”
The linac (linear accelerator) uses a form of therapy called intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).
To target tumors previously considered too risky to treat, the linac uses a form of therapy called intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT). Throughout each treatment, the machine interfaces with a CAT scan to pinpoint the tumor location and deliver a high energy X-ray beam to the cancerous site, sparing the surrounding healthy tissue.
The $2.5 million linac, in which $1.5 million was the result of an investment by Vanguard Health Systems, comes to Weiss during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer found in women; about 230,000 are diagnosed annually in the United States. According to the National Cancer Institute, prostate cancer is the most prevalent cancer overall, with more than 240,000 cases reported annually.
“The linac will help our patients fight these diseases with fewer side effects,” said Marina Kuznetsova, M.D., Ph.D., a radiation oncologist at Weiss. “It’s another tool in our multidisciplinary team approach to identifying and treating cancer in its early stages when outcomes are best.”
Leading the way in cancer care is nothing new at Weiss. In 2009, the hospital opened the Strauss Infusion Center for medical and chemotherapy care, complete with updated treatment rooms, a pharmacy and research area. This connects patients to the latest clinical trials through Weiss’ affiliated academic medical centers including University of Chicago, University of Illinois-Chicago and Rush University.
“The linac, along with our newly designed radiation oncology unit and infusion center, will better address the complex and varied needs of our patients,” said David Zweifler, service line director for oncology at Weiss. “This offers our patients a new level of the comprehensive, individualized care they deserve in a comfortable setting.”
In addition to oncology patients, the linac will help orthopedic patients set to undergo total joint replacements. The radiation can help to slow bone growth, a necessary step prior to surgery so the body accepts the new artificial component.
Visit Center for Radiation Oncology and Strauss Cancer Center at Weiss or call (800) 503-1234 for more information.