Breast cancer one week, cured the next?
October 29, 2014
In the News: Women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer have more treatment options than ever before. Surgical oncologist Dr. Alice Police discusses intraoperative radiotherapy with the Orange County Register:
Before stitching up breast cancer patient Freeman, oncologist Dr. Alice Police delivered Freeman’s first and only dose of radiation.
The “magic,” as Police calls it, lies with a cone-shaped device topped with an orb made of acrylic and gold. During a lumpectomy – in which the tumor and a bit of surrounding tissue are cut out, preserving the breast itself – the applicator is used to send a concentrated dose of radiation precisely to the tumor’s cavity.
It allows patients such as Freeman to avoid the complications of traditional radiation therapy, which zaps the entire breast, potentially exposing healthy tissue to radiation, and typically requires treatments five days a week for four to six weeks.