The Harley Street Clinic said that the RapidArc delivers radiotherapy faster and with a greater level of accuracy than previous linear accelerators. Linked to a tumour mapping system, the RapidArc travels around a patient targeting tumours from 360 degrees in just two minutes, rather than 20 minutes of exposure with older systems.

The RapidArc delivers radiation, following the contours of cancers, in one rotation giving better coverage of the tumour volume with far less damage to nearby healthy tissue.

According to the Clinic, prior to the introduction of RapidArc, patients could sometimes suffer radiation damage to the bladder or the rectum but the new system is safer and more comfortable for the patient. In addition, in the past, radiation doses had to be delivered slowly from one direction in several sessions spread over a period of several weeks.

The Harley Street Clinic’s RapidArcs have so far been used to treat patients with gastro-oesophageal cancers, lung cancer patients and others with tumours affecting the pelvis.

Neil Buckley, chief executive, said: “The addition of the new radiotherapy machines meant that The Harley Street Clinic had the most technologically advanced cancer network in Europe. And RapidArc is in addition to our special blood and bone cancer centre at University College Hospital where we are also opening a young person’s unit. We have the most comprehensive cancer care service in Europe as we treat every type of cancer for every age.

“As well as all the new technology, we are growing our network of diagnostic and treatment centres around London so that patients can get fast access to see one of our 500 top consultants closer to where they live or work.”