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Head & Neck cancer patient receives radiotherapy during surgery

BAHNO members involved in UK first

28 June 2019 (Last updated: 28 Jun 2019 19:29)

A woman has become the first patient in the UK with head & neck cancer to receive radiotherapy during surgery to remove a recurrent tumour.

Jayne Garrett underwent major surgery at University Hospital, Southampton after suffering a recurrence of her cancer following conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment in 2015 and 2017.

After her tumour was excised, doctors immediately used a revolutionary machine called Mobetron to deliver intraoperative electron beam radiotherapy.

Dr Shanmugasundaram Ramkumar, a consultant clinical oncologist and intraoperative radiotherapy lead at UHS, said: "Mobetron enables the delivery of radiation immediately after surgical resection and directly into the tumour bed, minimising scattering effects to surrounding normal tissues."

Mr Nimesh Patel, a consultant ENT surgeon who performed the operation, said the technology was "exciting".  He added: "This treatment was previously only available in a select few cancer centres in the US and Europe, so it is a significant moment for patients in the UK whose outcomes may improve as a result."

Mrs Garrett said:" With my previous radiotherapy I suffered some significant side effects such as being unable to produce saliva, but with this treatment I have not suffered from that at all."