This month marks three years since physicians began offering SAVI™ radiation treatment as part of breast conservation therapy for early-stage breast cancer – a major milestone in breast brachytherapy.
Leanna Elder became the first woman to receive accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) with SAVI in November 2006.
“SAVI was fantastic. It reduced my treatment time substantially, and I was able to do almost all of my normal activities during the five days of radiation, including driving myself to and from my therapy appointments,” said Elder, a retired librarian in Arizona. “I’ve seen friends experience painful side effects after undergoing whole breast radiation, so it was important to me to choose a breast cancer radiation treatment that spared as much healthy tissue as possible.”
Robert Kuske, M.D., a radiation oncologist at Arizona Breast Cancer Specialists, was the first physician to deliver treatment with SAVI, in November 2006.
“SAVI has become an important radiation therapy tool in the management of our breast cancer patients, because it allows us to offer this accelerated treatment to more women,” said Dr. Kuske.
By using a more precisely targeted dose of radiation, SAVI treats the tissue surrounding the lumpectomy cavity while minimizing the exposure of healthy tissue to radiation. Instead of the six weeks of treatment required with traditional whole breast radiation, treatment with the SAVI applicator lasts just five days.
Over the past three years, the effectiveness of the SAVI applicator has been documented in more than a dozen clinical studies, most recently in a peer-reviewed paper published by University of California, San Diego researchers in the journal Brachytherapy.
Researchers continually report outstanding results with the device, especially compared to other breast brachytherapy applicators. Studies show that SAVI provides excellent cosmetic results; fewer side effects and complications; and better dose control and protection of healthy tissue.
In particular, SAVI has demonstrated excellent coverage of the tumor bed while keeping dose to normal structures exceedingly low. Persistent seroma and infection rates remain well below the average rates for balloon brachytherapy.
The device’s ability to deliver targeted radiation based on patient-specific anatomy has expanded the number of women who can benefit from breast brachytherapy, according to research.
“Our mission is to advance breast cancer treatment through innovation. We are proud that our technology gives patients and physicians more options to address a disease that impacts one out of every eight women in the United States each year," said Jill Anderson, CEO of Cianna Medical, the company that manufactures SAVI. "The increasing adoption of SAVI is a testament to the experience, commitment and passion of the Cianna Medical team, each of whom is dedicated to improving women’s health by making five-day radiation therapy available to more patients than ever before."
Cianna Medical, Inc.