Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy
Learn more about stereotactic body radiation therapy, also known as stereotactic ablative radiotherapy.
Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT), also known as stereotactic ablative radiotherapy, administers very high doses of radiation, using several beams of various intensities aimed at different angles to precisely target the tumor.
SBRT begins with one or more sessions of treatment planning with CT, MRI or other advanced imaging techniques to precisely map the position of the tumor. The images are used to design a four-dimensional, customized treatment plan that determines beam intensity and positioning. The goal is to deliver the highest possible dose to kill the cancer while minimizing exposure to healthy organs.
Stereotactic body radiation treatments are usually given as a single dose or up to five doses once a day, although this can vary depending on the type and location of the tumor and the patient’s physical condition. The best candidates for this procedure are patients with small, well-defined tumors who cannot tolerate surgery. For some patients, SBRT may be able to replace surgery as a primary cancer treatment.
SBRT is typically used to treat small, early-stage non-small cell lung tumors. MD Anderson is studying its use for treating pancreatic cancer and metastatic tumors in the lung, liver, spine and adrenal glands.