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Radiotherapy (ray therapy) and radiosurgery in Israel

The Radiotherapy (radiation therapy) and Radiosurgery Department of Oncological Centre “Davidov” of Medical Centre named after Rabin, which is headed by Professor Ayal Fenig, is upgraded by ultra-modern equipment of Israeli and foreign production.

At Oncological Centre “Davidov”, up-to-date unique equipment RAPIDARK is implemented, which gives new hope to many patients suffering from oncological diseases.The technology is based on the usage of high-precision linear accelerators together with computer tomography in the real time regime. RAPIDARK allows to direct to a carcinoma the irradiation of 10 times more facility than in previous generation devices without damaging healthy organs. The RAPIDARC usage considerably reduces treatment terms and diminishes side effects and allows to prolong a patient’s life delivering him from operation. According to the “Davidov” specialists, who worked with this apparatus, on completion of a treatment course, a patient can return to ordinary life practically without a rehabilitation period.

Radiotherapy (ray therapy) is the usage of X-rays or other kinds of ionizing radiation for the arrest of cancerous cells. Ionizing radiation destroys construction cell substance – DNA. At attempt to divide, a cancerous cell with destroyed DNA dies.

Radiotherapy (ray therapy) is used in the following cases:

  • As an extra treatment after complete excision of a malignant tumor. The aim is to prevent a relapse.
  • As an extra treatment after partial excision of a tumor. The aim is to exterminate a residual tumor and prevent its growth.
  • At treatment of inoperable tumors. The aim is to slow down and stop tumor growth.

Different tumors have different sensitivity to ionizing radiation, and, accordingly, react to radiotherapy unequally. Such rare tumors as lymphoma and germinoma better respond to treatment by radiotherapy than the majority of neoplasms. At treatment of these tumors, radiotherapy is used as the main treatment method. There are tumors, for example, a metastatic melanoma or sarcoma which practically don’t react to radiotherapy. The most encephalomas are moderately sensitive to ionizing radiation, and, that’s why, radiotherapy (radiation therapy) is very often used as addition to a surgical treatment method.

Radiotherapy is divided into conventional radiation therapy and stereotactic radiosurgery.

The complications at radiotherapy are divided into early (appear during treatment or soon after its completion) and late (appear after six or more months after treatment). The complications can appear after conventional radiation therapy as well as after stereotactic radiosurgery. The early complications are rapid fatigability, appetite loss, sickness, head skin reddening, psilosis. These symptoms disappear on treatment completion. There also can appear short-term hypomnesia (memory about the latest events), while long-term memory (memory about the far past events) is not disturbed. The short-term memory derangements usually pass during two months of radiotherapy completion.

The examples of the late complications are imbalance and disordered coordination of movements, enuresis, hypomnesia, hormonal abnormalities. Children may have growth inhibition and reduction of capability to study. The special form of the late complications of radiotherapy is radiation necrosis. Radiation necrosis is accumulation of dead tumor cells, which at computer tomography or magnetic resonance tomography can look like a tumor. Radiation necrosis may cause the same symptoms as (headache, convulsions and so on) a tumor. To differentiate radiation necrosis from a tumor relapse, such examination methods as PET (Positron Emission Tomography) or SPECT (Single Photon Emission Computer Tomography) are used. In the cases when PET or SPECT don’t give a definite answer, stereotaxic biopsy can be used for diagnostics. Radiotherapy (ray therapy) is not assigned for children under three years old.

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