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Shadyside Hospital

Newly Renovated Radiation Oncology Center
Now Open at Shadyside Hospital

Shadyside Hospital announces the opening of the newly renovated Mary Hillman Jennings Radiation Oncology Center (MHJROC), a hospital-based facility that provides radiation oncology services for patients who have been diagnosed with cancer.

In addition to making significant and technological strides forward with the installation of new, state-of-the-art treatment planning and delivery systems, the center now provides patients with enhanced ease of access and comfort, and a greater level of user-friendliness. Patients are now being treated in the new facility.

State of the Art Technology

The treatment cornerstone of the facility is its Siemens KD2 linear accelerator. Shadyside Hospital is the first clinical site in the US to use Siemens' multileaf collimation system (MLC), and the hospital's physics staff is working with Siemens as a Beta test site for the MLC and associated features of the KD2 Linac.

"The linear accelerator produces two photon energies and six electron energies, and provides the capability to treat all superficial and deep seated tumors," said radiologist Russell Fuhrer, MD, medical director of the MHJROC. "The multileaf collimator enables individual shaping of treatment fields by moving any or all of the 58 leaves located inside the head of the linear accelerator," said Dr. Fuhrer.

The Linac is also equipped with online portal imaging that provides real-time verification of the shape and positioning of radiation treatment fields. Another feature of the Siemens system, noted Dr. Fuhrer, is the Lantis Verify and Record system. "This system verifies the size, shape and configuration of every treatment field prior to and during treatment, thus ensuring increased precision, and facilitates the accurate administration of complicated three-dimensional treatment plans," said Dr. Fuhrer. He added that the MHJROC will be used as a showcase site for introduction of new Siemens products.

The hospital will also be the first clinical site in the US for clinical use of the ADAC Pinnacle three-dimension treatment planning computer system. The ADAC system can reconstruct tumor volumes from CT and calculate optimal radiation doses and field configurations for three-dimensional treatment delivery. Also, the MHJROC's high dose rate brachytherapy program for the treatment of endobronchial lung, endometrial, and esophageal cancer is now encased in its own shielded vault, enhancing patient and staff scheduling.

Amenities are User-Friendly

The MHJROC was redesigned to provide greater ease of access and use for patients. An elevator in the hospital's main lobby now brings patients directly into the center's reception area. Adjacent to the reception area is a comprehensive patient education library containing books, journal articles, and videotapes on cancer and related subjects.

Patients at the center for consultation or follow-up are now being seen in one of three examination rooms that are fully equipped to perform general examinations, complete head and neck examinations including direct laryngoscopy, and gynecological examinations. Those coming for daily treatment are escorted to one of four individual private waiting rooms.

Besides advanced clinical services, the center also offers on-site nutritional and social service consultation to help patients with their specific needs during and after treatment.

"It is personally gratifying to see our patients benefiting from the generosity and hard work that have gone into the development of the MHJROC," said Dr. Fuhrer. "Our new facility is one of the premier radiation oncology centers in the region and a significant step forward for the oncology program at Shadyside Hospital."


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