A recent study shows treating benign tumors outside the brain using the CyberKnife frameless radiosurgery can successfully control their growth and progression with minimal toxicity. CyberKnife is a non-invasive robotic radiosurgical device that can remove tumors and other lesions without open surgery. It uses a robotic arm, controlled by a computer, that sends multiple beams of high-dose radiation directly to the tumor site.
During the study researchers examined the feasibility, toxicity and tumor control of patients with symptomatic benign tumors in the spine, neck, skull, eye and brainstem treated with CyberKnife. 50 benign tumors in 35 patients who underwent radiosurgery were evaluated. Seventy-eight percent of patients treated with CyberKnife had an improvement of their pre-treatment symptoms including pain and weakness. Tumor growth was 96-percent controlled locally for the 26 patients who had follow-up imaging for up to 25 months after treatment. CyberKnife was also able to control aggressive benign tumors that had progressed despite surgery and/or conventional radiation.
Thus researchers say their findings demonstrate that CyberKnife may offer a promising treatment option for patients with benign tumors who are not candidates for surgery or whose tumors are not amendable to surgery .