Radiation Oncology
Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy

Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) is a new radiation therapy technique that allows our clinicians to deliver more tightly focused treatments to your tumor in a significantly shorter time.

Using the sophisticated treatment plan developed by your doctor, VMAT delivers a continuous beam (an arc) of radiation as the linear accelerator rotates around you.

Previous treatments required the linear accelerator to deliver a small amount of radiation, and then stop to either rotate to a new position or move the multi-leaf collimator (MLC) into a new shape. VMAT enables the radiation to remain on while the linear accelerator movements occur.  The result is treatments that can be shorter and more closely focused on your tumor.VMAT gives you a superior treatment experience in two ways. First, it allows your physician to plan a treatment that is more conformal to your tumor.  This will spare surrounding healthy tissue and reduce unwanted dose to organs and nearby critical structures.  Second, VMAT treatments can be finished in as fast as two minutes, depending on the case. By reducing the length of your procedure, you will spend less time on the treatment table.In the past, treatment times would have ranged from seven to fifteen minutes, because radiation would be delivered in short “segments.” VMAT treatments consist of one or several arcs where radiation is delivered continuously with the linear accelerator moves. The simplest treatments can be completed in as fast as two minutes.  More complex cases usually take up to five minutes.

When you add up the total time saved across all of your treatments, VMAT can significantly reduce the duration of time you will spend on the treatment table. Many cancer types can benefit from VMAT treatments.  Every case is unique, but VMAT treatments are typically used for prostate, lung, head and neck cancers.

Click here for a video demonstration of VMAT.


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RELATED PAGES

  1. Image Guided Radiation Therapy
  2. Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy
  3. Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy
  4. Gamma Knife
  5. What is Brachytherapy?
  6. What is Radiation Therapy?
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