Intracavitary Breast Balloon HDR

Each year over 250,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer. While this is a frightening statistic, diagnosis doesn’t have to be. With early detection, a lumpectomy - followed by radiation - may be performed allowing the woman to keep her breast as well as her confidence and self-esteem. Traditional external beam radiation treatment following a lumpectomy can take up to seven weeks of radiation therapy, five times a week—a rather lengthy process.

In 2002, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new technology for breast cancer treatment. A surgeon inserts a small, soft catheter into lumpectomy cavity via a small incision. The end of this catheter contains a balloon which is then inflated with saline. Radiation is sent through this catheter to deliver prescribed dose of radiation directly to the tumor cavity.  The balloon remains inflated through end of treatment. Treatment is delivered twice a day for 5 consecutive days, after which the catheter is removed.  The main advantage of treatment with a balloon catheter device such as the Mammosite or Contoura is to radiate breast tissue in and around the tumor cavity in order to destroy any remaining cancer cells, while limiting radiation dose to healthy surrounding tissues of the lungs, heart and breast tissue. 

Memorial Radiation Oncology has been utilizing this treatment technique since 2004.  Our team of physicians and physicists are determined to provide the best quality of care with the best possible outcomes.  If you are a newly diagnosed breast cancer patient, talk with your surgeon or make an appointment to see one of our specialists to find out if you are a candidate.  Please call our office at 574-647-7461 if you have any questions.