February 26, 2024

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Cutting-Edge Technology Tackles Brain Tumours

According to the World Health Organization, Mental health action plan 2013-2020 report, neurological disorders affect millions of people worldwide. Approximately, 50 million people have epilepsy and 47 million people are suffering from dementia globally. Common neurological disorders include epilepsy, headache, Parkinson disease, dementia and neurological problems.

Thus, to lend a hand in treatment, the Minister for Health for Victoria, on 15 December 2020, unveiled the $8 million gamma knife at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. Victorian patients with brain tumours and cranial disorders will now have a greater chance of survival and improved quality of life thanks to the region’s first-ever gamma knife.

The equipment was funded by the Government and donors to the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation. The world-leading intra-cranial stereotactic radiosurgery and radiotherapy machine is only the third in Australia. It delivers high-intensity cobalt radiation therapy as a non-invasive way to treat lesions inside the skull.

The machine uses gamma rays to deliver a precise dose of radiation to the target in the brain to kill cancer cells and shrink tumours while avoiding damaging healthy brain tissue.

Gamma knife radiosurgery and radiotherapy have revolutionised the management of patients who in the past had very limited treatment options and is widely accepted as the gold standard in radiosurgery for adults and children with brain tumours.

Up to 500 patients, a year are expected to benefit from the new equipment – ensuring they receive the very best care they need closer to home.

The device may also provide new treatment options for a range of other non-cancerous conditions, such as painful trigeminal neuralgia, cranial vascular disorders, epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease.

The installation of the gamma knife further entrenches Peter Mac as a place of the world’s best cancer care for Victorian patients.

The Minister for Health for Victoria stated that the state has always been at the forefront of cutting-edge medical treatment and the installation of the gamma knife at Peter Mac ensures Victorian patients continue to receive the best care close to home.

The gamma knife is set to save the lives of patients with hard-to-reach tumours, where other treatments may not have been able to be safely carried out and improve outcomes for many others. The team of dedicated doctors, nurses, other healthcare workers and researchers at Peter Mac are world-leading and the government is ensuring they continue to have the equipment they need to give Victorian patients the very best care.

Recent market research forecast that the global gamma knife market is set to witness a substantial CAGR of 7.2% in the forecast period of 2019-2026. The rise in market growth is attributed to the growing cases of cancer, brain tumours, neurological disorders, growing geriatric population.

Gamma knife is a radiation technology which is used to treat the tissues of the brain tumours during radiosurgery; it is also used to treat epilepsy, trigeminal neuralgia and nerve disorders which cause chronic pain, arteriovenous malformations and other neurological conditions.

The key market drivers are an increasing number of invasive surgeries, government insurance plans, the rising prevalence of cancer and obesity among people and the technological advancement which will aid in the adoption of this new technology.

The main market restraints include the equipment’s high cost, potentially stringent regulations and the side effects and risks of treatment.


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