RADIOTHERAPY AND ONCOLOGY
The KPJ Johor Specialist Hospital Cancer Centre, Johor, Malaysia
A Comprehensive Cancer Treatment Center in Malaysia.
Radiotherapy involves delivering focused radiation (high energy X-rays) to destroy cancer cells. Radiotherapy can be the main treatment modality to cure the cancer e.g. in Nasopharyngeal Cancer (NPC), Cervix Cancer and Prostate Cancer, or it can be used before and after surgery e.g. Breast Cancer and Rectal Cancer. Often chemotherapy is used together with radiotherapy to enhance the effect of radiotherapy on the cancer cells. Radiotherapy is also very effective to palliate and relieve symptoms caused by advanced cancer such as pain, bleeding, etc.
Radiotherapy treatments are delivered in a series of painless daily sessions. Each treatment takes only a few minutes, but each session takes about 30 minutes to get checked in, change clothes, get into position and receive the radiotherapy. Treatments are usually scheduled daily, Monday through Friday, for several weeks. Before radiotherapy begins, your treatment plan will be designed. You will undergo a procedure called a CT simulation, where a CT scan is done in the position you will be treated, often with a supportive device to keep you comfortably in the same position for treatment. You may also receive tiny marks on your skin, like a permanent tattoo, to help the radiation therapist precisely position you for daily treatment. With the CT scan, three dimensional plans can be created to fit the shape of the treatment area.
3-Dimensional Conformal Radiotherapy (3-D CRT) combines multiple radiation treatment fields to deliver precise doses of radiation to the treatment area, while limiting radiation to healthy, normal tissues around it.
Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) is a new and advanced form of 3-D CRT that further modifies the radiation by varying the intensity of each radiation beam. This allows a precise adjustment of radiation doses to the treatment area, allowing higher radiation doses to the cancer with improved cure rates, and lower radiation doses to normal tissues with less side effects of treatment. This will greatly help improve the quality of life of patients during and after radiotherapy.
Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) uses a variety of two dimensional and three-dimensional imaging techniques throughout the course of radiation therapy to accurately identify, pinpoint and monitor your tumour for changes. IGRT, along with IMRT, increases the cancer cure rates.
ELEKTA SYNERGY WITH VMAT TECHNOLOGY
This is a comprehensive cancer centre which provides the full spectrum of cancer treatment such as radiotherapy, chemotherapy, biological targeted therapy, hormonal therapy, palliative care and cancer counseling. The Cancer Centre has recently installed the state-of-the-art Elekta Synergy Radiotherapy System which can deliver advanced 3-D Conformal Radiotherapy (3-D CRT), Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT), and Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT), which will greatly improve the rates of cancer cure and reduce the side effects of treatment. This system will eventually have the Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) technology which is a very advanced form of IMRT, making this center one of the few centres in the country with this new technology. The Cancer Centre also has a dedicated Oncology Day Care Centre, with well-trained and experienced oncology nurses, and a new PET/CT scanner, used for both diagnostic imaging and radiotherapy treatment planning.
Meeting the Consultant Oncologist
The Consultant Oncologist, the doctor who specializes in cancer treatment, will discuss all the treatment options available and recommend the best treatment for a particular patient based on the latest international guidelines. He will give a thorough explanation regarding the disease and the most appropriate treatment including the cost. He will also provide a holistic approach of cancer care for the patient and the family.
Patients and family members will be counseled by our experienced oncology nurses during their visits to the Cancer Centre regarding the cancer diagnosis, choices of treatment and possible side effects, and the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle including a well-balanced diet, regular exercise and positive thinking.
Chemotherapy is cancer treatment with medications that have the ability to destroy cancer cells by different methods. Often, two or three different types of chemotherapy may be combined to get the best outcome. Chemotherapy is usually delivered every two to three weeks for a few months. The oncologist will discuss with you regarding the possible side effects that you may encounter. Patients requiring ambulatory infusion pump for prolonged infusion chemotherapy will receive complimentary usage of our electronic infusion pump.
Biological targeted therapy is cancer treatment with medications that stimulate the body's immune system to target and destroy cancer cells. It can be given as an injection i.e. monoclonal antibodies (mAb) such as Herceptin, Avastin and Erbitux, or as tablets taken orally i.e. tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI) such as Iressa, Tarceva and Sutent. Targeted therapy can be used alone or in combination with chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Hormonal therapy is cancer treatment with medications that block the effects of hormones in the body that stimulates cancer cells. This form of treatment is commonly used in breast and prostate cancers. It can be given as oral tablets taken daily e.g. Tamoxifen, Arimidex and Casodex, or injections given at regular intervals e.g. Zoladex.
Bone-building medications may also be given to patients who have cancer which has spread to the bones. These medications can strengthen bones, reduce the pain and other serious complications caused by bone metastases such as fractures. Cancer treatment such as with chemotherapy and hormonal therapy can result in significant bone loss (cancer treatment-induced bone loss) and increased risk of fragility fracture, which can be prevented with bone-building medications. These medications can be administered every few weeks through an injection e.g. Zometa and Xgeva.
Chemo Port is a small disc made of plastic or metal inserted under the skin of your upper chest by the Consultant Surgeon as an outpatient procedure. It allows the doctor and nurses to to draw blood and deliver chemotherapy and other medications directly into a vein without having to insert a needle into your arm each time. The chemo port produces a small bump under your skin. A soft thin tube called a catheter connects the port to a large vein.
The Oncology Team
Staffed with experienced, caring and dedicated Oncologist, Oncology Nurses, Medical Physicist, Radiation Therapist and Clinic Assistants, and equipped with advanced technology for cancer treatment, the Cancer Centre is able to provide the best and holistic cancer care to patients in Malaysia and the Asia Pacific region.
Dr Natasha Mohd Hashim
Dr Lum Wan Heng
Consultant Clinical & Radiation Oncologist
Radiotheraoy & Oncology Centre
Basement 2, Outpatient Block
KPJ Johor Specialist Hospital
39-B, Jalan Abdul Samad
80100, Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +607-2253000 Ext 500;
+607-2253000 Ext 258 (Clinic Dr Natasha)
+607-2253055 (Clinic Dr Lum Wan Heng)
Fax: +607-225 3120
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com