Department of Radiation Therapy | Treatment in St. Vincentius Hospital Karlsruhe | Departments. Germany | BookingHealth
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Department of Radiation Therapy - St. Vincentius Hospital Karlsruhe

St. Vincentius Hospital Karlsruhe

Karlsruhe, Germany
Department id # 333814
Doctor photo
Prof. Dr. med. Johannes Classen
Department of Radiation Therapy
Specialized in: radiation therapy

About the Department of Radiation Therapy at St. Vincentius Hospital Karlsruhe

The Department of Radiation Therapy at the St. Vincentius Hospital Karlsruhe specializes in the treatment of benign and malignant tumors, with a particular focus on cancer treatment. The physicians at the medical facility are highly competent in intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT), image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT), brachytherapy, and combination chemoradiation therapy. The department also offers palliative care for patients with advanced stages of cancer. Moreover, the department's radiation therapists have unique competence in performing high-precision stereotactic irradiation of tumors in the brain, lung, and liver. Stereotactic surgery is a highly effective irradiation technique that causes virtually no side effects. In most cases, this therapeutic procedure is an alternative to open surgery for patients for whom surgery is contraindicated. It should be noted that the department is located in a new facility with state-of-the-art equipment, including three linear accelerators from Siemens and Varian, the very latest systems for CT, MRI, and PET/CT. Thus, the doctors have at their command all the necessary resources for effective and safe radiation therapy. The department is headed by Prof. Dr. med. Johannes Classen.

The first stage of the therapeutic process is consultation with a doctor, during which the specialist studies the patient's medical history, current medical reports, and images to determine the advisability of radiation therapy in a particular case. This is followed by the stage of developing the optimal treatment regimen. Irradiation is planned based on CT images. The specialists determine the target area for irradiation, calculate the radiation dose, and prescribe the optimal number of sessions. Immediately before irradiation, the patient assumes a supine position on the linear accelerator table. As a rule, physicians use vacuum cushions, stereotactic frames, and other assistive devices to position the patient. The doctors perform control CT scans just before the irradiation session. This helps to maximize the accuracy of radiation delivery to the pathological focus. The radiation then begins, which lasts several minutes and is absolutely painless.

One of the most demanded treatment methods in the department is intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT). The procedure is highly effective. It can be used to irradiate both benign and malignant tumors. The IMRT technique is a type of conformal therapy in which specialists can vary the intensity of each individual beam. As a result, the maximum dose of radiation is directed toward the tumor, while healthy tissues are virtually unaffected. The department also offers an advanced IMRT method, volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT). The essence of this type of irradiation is almost identical to IMRT, but when using this method, the radiation exposure to the tumor is carried out by continuous rotation of the linear accelerator gantry up to 360°. Therefore, VMAT allows doctors to distribute the dose with the highest precision according to the parameters of the shape and size of the tumor while practically not affecting healthy tissues. In many cases, a single VMAT session is sufficient to suppress the malignant tumor, which is also a significant advantage.

The department's special offer is stereotactic radiation therapy. This type of irradiation is not offered in every European hospital because it requires expensive equipment and special training for doctors. Stereotactic irradiation involves the use of focused, high-energy beams to target the tumor. Meanwhile, the location of the tumor is precisely determined using a 3D coordinate system. The advantage of this method lies in the high precision of beam penetration into the tumor. In most cases, only one session of stereotactic radiation therapy is required to completely destroy the pathological neoplasm, whether it is a malignant tumor or an epileptogenic focus in the brain. The department's doctors perform stereotactic radiation therapy for patients with hard-to-reach tumors in the brain, lungs, and liver.

The department's specialists also brilliantly perform internal radiation therapy using a brachytherapy procedure. Both low-dose and high-dose brachytherapy techniques are used here. The optimal treatment option is determined on an individual basis, taking into account the patient's clinical data. A modern Nucletron device is available in the department for this type of irradiation. During brachytherapy, a radiation source (Iridium-192) is delivered directly to the pathological focus using applicators under X-ray guidance, allowing radiation to impact only the tumor with virtually no adverse effect on healthy tissues. Brachytherapy is indicated for patients with head and neck tumors, breast cancer, cervical cancer, and prostate cancer.

The department specializes in the following types of radiation therapy:

  • Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)
  • Volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT)
  • Image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT)
  • Stereotactic radiation therapy
  • Brachytherapy
  • Combination chemoradiation therapy
  • Other types of radiation therapy

Photo of the doctor: (c) ViDia Kliniken Karlsruhe