Kris Hellenga, founder of CoppaFeel has written an article in The Sun about her latest treatment using a Gamma Knife ICON for brain metastases at the Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre. The ICON installed during the autumn allows patient to be treated using a mask, removing the need to use a headframe for suitable patients. In her article which can be accessed here she considers how amazing modern health technology can really be and pays tribute to the centre staff “..some of the kindest, most dedicated people I have ever met”.
CoppaFeel! was founded in 2009 by Kristin, pictured above with Will Kinnaird, Senior Radiographer at the Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre and the mask made for her treatment. Kris was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer at the age of 23. After finding a lump at 22, living abroad in China for 8 months and eventually visiting her doctor 3 times, Kris was told the news that she had incurable breast cancer. Kris was unaware that breast cancer could affect people in their twenties and knew very little about the disease. It struck her that there was very little information out there for young people, educating them about the disease, how they could be looking after themselves and informing them that breast cancer doesn’t just affect women over 50. Although Kris will always live with cancer, she wanted to get the message out there to young people that catching cancer early means you have a higher chance of surviving and recovering. She wanted people to learn from her story and become pro-active about their own health.
The idea for CoppaFeel! was born and by now has grown into a fantastic charity and we encourage you to find out more about their work here. Education & awareness is at the core of what they do with a mission to stamp out late detection and misdiagnosis of breast cancer by ensuring that people know the signs and symptoms of the disease, know what their boobs look and feel like normally, check their boobs regularly from a younger age and have the confidence to seek medical referral when they detect abnormalities.
QSRC achieved 100% extremely likely to recommend the service for the NHS Friends and Family Test (FFT) during November. As part of our commitment to providing an exceptional service we also kindly ask patients to complete a bespoke feedback questionnaire again with hugely positive feedback from patients being received some of which can be viewed here.
The FFT is an important feedback tool that supports the fundamental principle that people who use NHS services should have the opportunity to provide feedback on their experience. The FFT asks people if they would recommend the services they have used and offers a range of responses. Listening to the views of patients and staff helps identify what is working well, what can be improved and how.
When combined with our bespoke feedback questionnaire it provides a mechanism to highlight both good and poor patient experience. This kind of feedback is a vital part of us meeting patient expectations and continuing to provide an exceptional patient service and experience.
Alexander Polonsky (Lead Radiographer) Sinead Murphy (Radiographer), Ian Paddick (Chief Physicist) and Alex Dimitriadis (Senior Physicist) attended the annual meeting of the European Leskell Gamma Knife Society, 16-18th November. Ian gave presentations on Hypofractionation and its radiobiology and Raising standards in SRS.
The meeting was held in Tolouse, France where a Gamma Knife ICON has recently been installed by the University Cancer Institute Toulouse (IUCT) driven by Professor Yves Lazorthes taking more than 20 years to become reality. We were pleased in July 2017 to host a visit to Queen Square for Toulouse physicists Eliane Graulieres and Maxime Goubert as part of their preparations and planning for the new Gamma Knife.
The Society in marking its 20th anniversary. The concept of a European Society came up from a group of European Gamma Knife users in 1995. The idea was to create an independent forum represented by users of the technology.As a result the Society was founded in 1998 as a forum for Gamma Knife clinicians, physicists and researchers to exchange information, experiences and clinical techniques, as well as clinical data on the use of Leksell Gamma Knife.
A new generation of stereotactic treatment began following a major upgrade over the summer and the first patients have been treated using the new Gamma Knife ICON at Queen Square Radiosurgery Centre. The new machine expands and improves the range of treatments on offer, allowing more patients with malignant and benign brain conditions to be treated with highly-precise radiotherapy.
The ICON gives the option of treating in a thermoplastic masks rather than a metal frame, if clinically appropriate. This allows treatment to be split over three to five sessions and means some patients with large tumours who were previously denied treatment are now eligible. It also allows real-time monitoring of patient movement using infrared cameras during mask-based treatment with an integrated “cone beam” CT scanner, which allows us to verify patients position before treatment. These changes also combine to allow us to change our workflow so we can plan some treatments before the patient arrives in the department for treatment.
Mr Neil Kitchen, Consultant Neurosurgeon and Clinical Director of the Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre, said: “The ICON system expands our options to meet patient-specific needs. It provides the unrivalled precision and accuracy for which Gamma Knife has long been known and gives us the flexibility to deliver treatment in single or multiple sessions. This expands the range of indications that we can treat to include larger tumours and offers frameless treatment for some patients.As a national centre of excellence it is important that we continue to have the latest technology available to us.”
Queen Square Radiosurgery Centre works in partnership with University College London Hopsitals NHS Foundation Trust to run NHS England’s Stereotactic Radiosurgery Supra Centre for the South of England.
Kevin Sullivan, Divisional Manager, Cancer Services at UCLH, said: “We are pleased to work in partnership and welcome their investment in upgrading to a Gamma Knife Icon which adds to the armamentarium available to our clinicians and offers opportunities for considerable benefits for patients. UCLH has a comprehensive suite of the latest innovative technologies to treat patients with cranial tumours and other indications that the health service will be able to rely on in the years to come.”
To help keep patients, their families, referrers and other health professionals informed of the work going Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre a new newsletter has been launched and the first edition is available by clicking on the image below. We aim to bring you news of the latest developments and examples of the kind of treatments available at one of Britain’s leading radiosurgery
This first issue focuses on new research at QSRC showing survival times for patients with secondary brain tumours may be longer than previous thought. It also highlights the story of one patient who was able to get his life back on track after having a three-stage treatment for large metastases at Queen Square.
QSRC aims to bring you this newsletter four times a year and it will available in printed or email form. and will be made available on this website.
Comments and suggestions are welcome and can be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Elekta’s Leksell Gamma Knife® Icon™, the next generation in stereotactic radiosurgery (“SRS”) technology has been installed at the Queen Square Radiosurgery Centre.
The centre is one of two NHS England (“NHSE”) National Centres of Excellence providing specialist care and support for patients including those with rare and complex conditions and is located at the National Hospital for Neurosurgery and Neurology, part of the University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (“UCLH”).
Leksell Gamma Knife is the leading SRS system designed specifically to target brain tissue offering proven accuracy in both the location and radiation dose delivered to targeted brain tissue. Icon is the sixth generation of the Leksell Gamma Knife system, resulting from Elekta’s extensive history in SRS technology and decades of collaboration with neurosurgeons and radiation oncologists around the world. You can think of it as the “new and improved” version of the Gamma Knife Perfexion first installed at the centre in 2012, in that it builds off what was already a high regarded sytem preferred by experts worldwide.
Although it sounds like surgery, Gamma Knife radiosurgery is minimally invasive, does not involve any incisions and does not require a hospital stay. In contrast to traditional whole brain radiation therapy that exposes the entire brain to low doses of radiation over multiple sessions, Gamma Knife radiosurgery uses multiple beams of radiation at the same time to treat just the targeted area. This allows for higher doses of radiation to be delivered each treatment and as a result, patients require fewer treatment sessions. Furthermore, healthy surrounding tissues receive less radiation, resulting in fewer of the unpleasant side effects often associated with radiation therapy and improved clinical outcomes.
Since it is an outpatient procedure, Gamma Knife radiosurgery does not require a hospital stay and offers significant benefits to patients. Similarly, thanks to its minimally invasive nature, Gamma Knife also eliminates the risks associated with general surgery, and most patients are able to return to normal activities within a day, rather than weeks or even months.
Icon provides the flexibility for single dose administration or multiple treatment sessions over time. Clinicals still have the option of delivering a single large dose, as with the Gamma Knife Perfexion or smaller doses in multiple sessions in what is referred to as fractionated radiosurgery. This widens the range of indications that can be treated to include larger malignant tumours.
Many patients will have the option of a custom face mask as opposed to the headframe, which some people prefer. However, this will depend on their specific condition and the characteristics of the area being treated, such as size and location.
“UCLH has a comprehensive suite of the latest innovative technologies to treat patients with cranial tumours and other indications that the health service will be able to rely on in the years to come” said Kevin Sullivan, Divisional Manager, Cancer Services at UCLH. “We are pleased to work in partnership with Medical Equipment Solutions Ltd delivering the South of England NHSE Stereotactic Radiosurgery Supra Centre and welcome their investment in upgrading to a Gamma Knife ICON which adds to the armamentarium available to our clinicians and offers opportunities for considerable benefits for patients”.
“As a national centre of excellence it is important that we continue to have the latest technology available to us” said Mr Neil Kitchen, Consultant Neurosurgeon and Clinical Director of the Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre. “The Icon system expands our options to meet patient-specific needs. It provides the unrivalled precision and accuracy for which Gamma Knife has long been known and gives us the flexibility to deliver treatment in single or multiple sessions. This expands the range of indications that we can treat to include larger tumours and offers frameless treatment for some patients”.
Lynne Brooks, CEO of Medical Equipment Solutions Ltd said “In the 70th anniversary year since the formation of the National Health Service we are proud to work in partnership with UCLH ensuring that the latest technology underpins the NHSE SRS Supra Centre for the South of England. The installation of a Gamma Knife ICON represents yet another important landmark in the development of the centre which grows from strength to strength, making a real difference for patients and their families and is contributing towards the implementation of NHS England’s Cancer Strategy”.
“Elekta’s Leksell Gamma Knife® Icon™ is the only dedicated intracranial solution on the market, and over 75 leading health centres around the world recognise the safety, efficacy and comfort benefits that the system provides to patients.” said Steve Tomkins, Elekta’s UK, Ireland & Nordics Business Unit Manager. “We welcome the investment Queen Square Gamma Knife has made in a new Icon and are proud to continue to working with Medical Equipment Solutions Ltd, with whom we have worked over the last decade in to increase access to advanced radiotherapy in the UK”.
About the Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre
The Centre is owned and operated by Medical Equipment Solutions Ltd via its subsidiary QSRC Ltd. The centre enjoys a significant number of strengths from the well established integration with other areas of expertise within UCLH and is located at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, the UK’s largest dedicated neurological and neurosurgical hospital. In 2016 a partnership with UCLH, was successful in becoming one of only two NHS England centres of excellence (Supracentres) for stereotactic radiosurgery/radiotherapy. As well as providing specialist care and support for patients, including those with rare and complex conditions, the centre also undertakes and active programme of research. www.queensquaregammaknife.co.uk
UCLH provides first-class acute and specialist services in five hospitals in central London including The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery (NHNN), Queen Square, the UK’s largest dedicated neurological and neurosurgical hospital. UCLH’s mission is to deliver top-quality patient care, excellent education and world-class research. In partnership with University College London (UCL) they are one of the country’s five comprehensive biomedical research centres and are a member of UCL Partners that brings together some of the UK’s world-renowned medical research centres and hospitals. www.uclh.nhs.uk
Elekta is proud to be the leading innovator of equipment and software used to improve, prolong and save the lives of people with cancer and brain disorders. Their advanced, effective solutions are created in collaboration with customers, and more than 6,000 hospitals worldwide rely on Elekta technology. Their treatment solutions and oncology informatics portfolios are designed to enhance the delivery of radiation therapy, radiosurgery and brachytherapy, and to drive cost efficiency in clinical workflows. www.elekta.com.
For more information please contact Lynne Brooks, CEO, The Queen Square Gamma Knife Centre
Tel: 01372 362673
A Leksell Gamma Knife Icon, the next generation in stereotactic radiosurgery (“SRS”) technology is being installed at the Queen Square Radiosurgery Centre with commissioning due to be completed in coming weeks.
The ICON is the next generation technology in stereotactic radiosurgery offering unparalleled accuracy and is a “new and improved” version of the Gamma Knife Perfexion, in that it builds off what was already a highly regarded system preferred by experts worldwide.
Clinicians will still have the option of delivering a single large dose but also smaller doses in multiple sessions in what is referred to as fractionated radiosurgery. This widens the range of indications that can be treated to include larger malignant tumours.
Benefits for patients include that some will have the option of a custom face mask as opposed to the head frame, which some people prefer. However, this will depend on their specific condition and the characteristics of the area being treated, such as size and location.
Please bookmark and revisit here to follow updates or e-mail email@example.com if you would like to receive further information.
ISRS has now started accepting abstract submissions for the Congress in June, 2019. The Scientific Committee will consider for acceptance, abstracts that contain new science in the field of radiosurgery. To view the list of topics and guidelines for submission, please visit the submission site here.
The deadline for abstract submission is January 31, 2019 (midnight, UTC+1:00).
The annual global and regional treatment statistics data gathered from Gamma Knife centres by the Leskell Gamma Knife Society are now available. The number of patient benefiting from the significant advantages that Gamma Knife radiosurgery offers continues to grow with some 84,000 treated during 2017 taking the cumulative total to 1,124,000.
During 2017 the cumulative total of patients treated for brain metastases reached 400,000 cases with just short of 35,000 cases treated in 2017 representing the key area for increasing use of the Gamma Knife, increasing from 28.1% of treatments between 1991-2017 to 40% in 2017. The cumulative total of patients treated by Gamma Knife in Europe has now reached in excess of 250,000 of which some 12% have been undertaken in the UK. The UK experienced a 22% year on year growth in 2017 following the introduction of a new service model by NHS England which increases access to Gamma Knife as part of a concrete step towards delivery of the national cancer strategy.