Novel non-invasive ventilation improves precision of radiological tumor treatment
For treating cancer, radiotherapy targets tumours as accurately as possible, while avoiding damage to surrounding healthy tissue. The greatest challenge is movement caused by the patient breathing during treatment. To guarantee complete tumour irradiation, the tumour and an additional margin of healthy tissue are irradiated. Clinicians are constantly striving to reduce this margin of healthy tissue. The goal of the EU-funded MV for radiotherapy project is to introduce clinically the use of non-invasive mechanical ventilators to facilitate radiotherapy. The ventilator techniques were invented by the project partners and showed great promise in proof-of-concept trials on breast cancer patients. The techniques can safely prolong breath-hold duration in patients beyond five minutes, thereby reducing and regularising breathing movements and improving radiotherapy targeting.