GUWAHATI, June 4 - City-based Dr B Borooah Cancer Institute (BBCI) has treated 244 cancer patients with the state-of-the-art Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) radiation treatment since its induction last year.
According to Director of BBCI Dr Amal Chandra Kataki, the institute is the only government-aided hospital in Assam to have this state-of-the-art treatment facility.
VMAT radiation therapy costs more than Rs 2 lakh in private hospitals, but this advanced treatment technology is provided free of cost to general patients at the BBCI under government schemes like Atal Amrit Abhiyan and Ayushman Bharat, said Dr Kataki.
�Though 244 patients were treated, the numbers of VMAT plans executed are 400 as many patients require multiple phases of treatment. Each treatment plan requires separate contouring, planning, quality assurance, and execution,� said Dr Apurba Kumar Kalita, Professor and head of radiation oncology of BBCI.
Dr Mouchumee Bhattacharyya, Deputy Director (Research) of BBCI, said that VMAT is a novel radiation therapy technique that delivers the radiation dose continuously as the treatment machine rotates.
�This technique accurately shapes the radiation dose to the tumour while minimising the dose to the organs surrounding the tumour. Additional benefits are the shorter duration of time required to deliver the full dose of radiation as well as deployment of Image Guided Radiotherapy (IGRT) which involves incorporation of imaging before treatment to enable more precise verification of treatment delivery,� stated Dr Bhattacharyya.
It is noteworthy that two medical physicist interns at BBCI are carrying out research projects on VMAT.
Free lunch for outdoor patients: Meanwhile, BBCI has started a free lunch service for outdoor cancer patients and their attendants five days a week.
This is a collaborative initiative with the Hare Krishna Movement, Guwahati, and Airports Authority of India (AAI), North East region. The service was launched on Wednesday
Speaking on the occasion, BBCI Director Dr Kataki thanked the Hare Krishna Movement and Sanjiv Jindal, Executive Director of AAI.
Jindal spoke about various initiatives undertaken by the AAI under its Corporate Social Responsibility scheme.
For the last one and a half year the free lunch scheme was provided two days a week.
A brief food distribution ceremony was organised on the occasion and it was attended by doctors and staff of BBCI.