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IMRT - Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy

At Palomar Medical Center, IMRT is used to treat cancers of the prostate, head and neck, breast, brain, and gynecological malignancies.

How It Works

IMRT is an advanced mode of high- precision radiotherapy that utilizes computer- controlled x-ray accelerators to deliver precise radiation doses to a malignant tumor or specific areas within the tumor.

The radiation dose is designed to conform to the three-dimensional (3-D) shape of the tumor by modulating- or controlling- the intensity of the radiation exposure to surrounding normal tissues. Treatment is carefully planned by using 3-D computer tomography (CT) images of the patient in conjunction with computerized dose calculations to determine the dose intensity pattern that will best conform to the tumor shape.

Typically, combinations of several intensity-modulated fields coming from different beam directions produce a custom tailored radiation dose that maximizes tumor dose while also protecting adjacent normal tissues.

Because the ratio of normal tissue dose to tumor dose is reduced to a minimum with the IMRT approach, higher and more effective radiation doses can safely be delivered to tumors with fewer side effects compared with conventional radiotherapy techniques. IMRT also has the potential to reduce treatment toxicity, even when doses are not increased.

 Things You Should Know...About IMRT to the Prostate

Do you have questions about Radiation Oncology Services at Palomar Health? Visit our Patient Resources page or contact us!