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RapidArc super-fast, super-accurate radiotherapy systems prove their worth at The Harley Street Clinic in central London

RapidArc – the biggest advance in linear accelerator radiotherapy for many years - has proved to be a great success at the renowned Harley Street Clinic in London.

RapidArc delivers radiotherapy faster and with a greater level of accuracy than previous linear accelerators.  Linked to a unique tumour mapping system, the RapidArc travels around a patient targeting tumours from 360 degrees in just two minutes, rather than 20 minutes of exposure with older systems.  It delivers radiation, following the contours of cancers, in one rotation giving better coverage of the tumour volume with far less damage to nearby healthy tissue.

In the case of prostate cancer for example, prior to the introduction of RapidArc, patients could sometimes suffer radiation damage to the bladder or the rectum but this new system is safer and more comfortable for the patient.  In addition, in the past, radiation doses had to be delivered slowly from one direction in several sessions spread over a period of several weeks, but now, all that is in the past.

The Harley Street Clinic’s RapidArcs have so far been used to treat patients with gastro-oesophageal cancers, lung cancer patients and others with tumours affecting the pelvis.

The Harley Street Clinic is the hub of the HCA Cancer Care network, the largest provider of cancer care in the UK outside the NHS.  The £3.5 million radiotherapy machines are the latest additions to a £25 million investment programme in the latest technology.  The Clinic’s cancer centre last year became the first hospital in the UK to install the revolutionary robotic CyberKnife radiosurgery system.

Chief Executive Neil Buckley said the addition of the new state of the art radiotherapy machines meant that The Harley Street Clinic now had the most technologically advanced cancer network in Europe.  “In the past year we have opened the new CyberKnife centre, The London Gamma Knife centre for the treatment of brain tumours at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, a new cancer centre, Harley Street at Queen’s  at Queen’s Hospital in Romford, the new Molecular Imaging Centre in Harley Street and these two RapidArc machines – in addition to a range of new CT, PETCT and MRI scanning and mapping equipment,” he said. “And this is in addition to our special blood and bone cancer centre at University College Hospital where we are also opening a young person’s unit.”

“We now have the most comprehensive cancer care service in Europe as we treat every type of cancer for every age,” said Mr Buckley.  “As well as all the new technology, we are growing our network of diagnostic and treatment centres around London so that patients can get fast access to see one of our 500 top consultants closer to where they live or work.”

“Nowadays patients want access to the very best diagnosis and without having to make arduous journeys.  We are currently fitting out two new diagnostic and outpatient centres and we’ll be making further announcements about the expansion of our cancer network later this year,” said Mr Buckley.


Note to Editors:

The Harley Street Clinic is part of HCA International Limited which owns the six leading private hospitals in central London, each with an international reputation for the highest standards of care.  They are: The Wellington – the largest private hospital in Europe, The London Bridge Hospital, The Harley Street Clinic, The Portland Hospital for Women and Children, The Lister Hospital and The Princess Grace Hospital.

HCA also has four outpatient and diagnostic centres – soon to be six – a blood and bone cancer treatment joint venture with the NHS at University College Hospital, The London Gamma Knife Centre, another joint venture with the NHS at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, Harley Street at Queen’s – a new private patient cancer centre at Queen’s Hospital in Romford and HCA Laboratories.

The six HCA hospitals treat more than 300,000 patients per year.  They also specialise in the most complex medical procedures. The HCA CancerCare Network, is the largest provider of cancer care in the UK outside the NHS.   Medical teams in HCA are also involved in research programmes aimed at finding new treatments in areas such as heart disease and cancer.

In the past five years HCA has invested around £250 million in capital expenditure including new diagnostic and treatment technology.  As an example, HCA last year installed at The Harley Street Clinic, the revolutionary CyberKnife robotic radiotherapy machine, which is able to target previously untreatable tumours.  It is the first machine of its kind in the UK.

For More Media Information, please contact:

Neil Huband on 07808 298989 or 020 7436 6372

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