New HDR Brachytherapy Treatment Machine installed

The W.P. Holman Clinic has recently completed the installation of a new High Dose Rate Brachytherapy unit. The newly purchased state of the art Brachytherapy equipment is used to treat small tumours in various parts of the body that cannot be removed surgically or treated with conventional radiation therapy. The new unit called a Flexitron replaces the existing system and will allow for the department to continue to provide brachytherapy treatment for patients in Tasmania. Without this facility all patient requiring brachytherapy would be required to travel to the mainland. The system involved the installation of a new HDR remote afterloader, new Geneva treatment applicator and updated brachytherapy planning software.

The 20 channel Flexitron is the latest models from Elekta and provides patients with access to cutting edge technology. The Flexitron has numerous built in safety features as well as forward stepping source that provides sub millimetre accuracy of the treatment.

The brachytherapy planning system, Oncentra Brachy, allows the radiation oncology team to efficiently map target tissue for treatment and healthy tissue to be avoided. The system then allows for accurate reconstruction of the applicators used to deliver treatment and mapping of the radiation dose. The speed with which this can be achieved, allows for each patient to have an individual plan created for their specific anatomy and diagnosis.

The installation of these products would not have been possible without the generous support of the Northern W.P. Holman Clinic Trust and Mr Mark Barbeliuk. Mr Barbeliuk’s donation of $250,000 in August 2021 was put towards the purchase of this new equipment. The W.P. Holman Clinic would like to thank both parties for their generous support to ensure that the patients of Tasmania have access to this vital service.