Clinicians have carried out the India's first treatment using a novel, faster form of radiotherapy that extends more advanced care to more patients at Yashoda Cancer Institute in Hyderabad. A 72-year-old bladder cancer patient received the pioneering treatment using RapidArc radiotherapy technology from Varian Medical Systems. The company's RapidArc technology makes it possible to deliver image-guided IMRT (intensity modulated radiotherapy) two to eight times faster than is possible with conventional IMRT. RapidArc delivers a precise and efficient treatment in single or multiple arcs of the treatment machine around the patient and offers several advantages over traditional approaches, according to clinician Dr. Srinivas Chilikuri. "The whole treatment duration including set-up and check was completed in ten minutes, which involved just 90 seconds of 'beam-on' time," said Dr. Chilikuri. "We witnessed high dose conformity, excellent target coverage and good critical tissue sparing but the main advantage was the speed of the treatment." Dr. Chilikuri said speed is particularly important because of the large number of cancer patients in India. "In a country like ours with a heavy cancer burden there is a real issue with waiting lists," he said. "We deal with this by prioritising and optimizing treatment facilities and RapidArc is an excellent example of this approach. With this, we can carry out faster and more precise treatments with less complex delivery and less complicated quality assurance requirements. "The whole point of acquiring RapidArc was to treat more and more patients with high precision technology. With RapidArc's fast and efficient treatment delivery we will significantly increase the number of patients treated with advanced conformal techniques." Dr. Chilikuri said the clinical team at Yashoda plans to use RapidArc for a variety of common cancers such as head & neck, cervical, prostate and lung, as well as complicated tumors which are otherwise difficult to treat with other techniques. A comprehensive cancer center with state-of-the-art technology, the hospital treats patients from south and east India, South Asia and the Middle East. Dheeraj Gorukanti, chief executive officer of Yashoda Hospitals Group, said, "Yashoda Hospitals is proud to be one of the first sites in the world to implement Varian's RapidArc system. We believe it will provide a real edge in helping patients fight cancer."