Treating Horses with Tumors: New Technology Available

Sound-Eklin digital imaging company introduced the new Axxent Veterinary Electronic Brachytherapy System that will make it easier to perform radiation treatment in horses with tumors.

"Horses are an obvious choice for this therapy," said Greg Stoutenburgh, vice president of marketing at Sound-Eklin, at the ACVIM Forum 2010 veterinary meeting held in Anaheim, Calif. "Veterinarians will be able to treat tumors more effectively. You just can't get a horse in a linear accelerator [equipment used traditionally for radiation therapy in animals]."

The technology has been used for many years in people to treat cancers such as breast cancer, because it targets the tumor without harming the surrounding chest wall and lungs.

Axxent Veterinary Electronic Brachytherapy System emits X rays with an electronic source placed directly on or in the tumor. Therefore, it minimizes exposure and damage to healthy tissues. In addition, patients tend to need fewer treatments.

The radiation equipment is portable and safer for both the patient and the clinician, said Stoutenburgh. Clinicians no longer need to leave the patient alone in a leaded bunker to deliver the therapy.

"I think it is adapted to work better in veterinary medicine than in human medicine. We will be able to treat tumors with radiation more effectively right at the source," Stoutenburgh said.

About the Author

Marie Rosenthal, MS

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