Three-dimensional (3D) conformal radiation therapy is an advanced radiation therapy for mesothelioma. Thanks to 3D technology, this therapy can precisely target tumors and avoid damaging surrounding healthy tissues.
How Does 3D Conformal Radiation Therapy Compare to Traditional Radiation Therapy?
3D conformal radiation therapy generates 3D images of a patient’s tumor and surrounding organs using either computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), or positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET-CT). These images allow the interventional radiologist to deliver a more concentrated dose of photons to the tumor and reduce the amount of photons delivered to the surrounding tissues.
In contrast, traditional radiation therapy (two-dimensional photon therapy) uses x-rays to deliver the same dose of photons to the tumor and the tissues beyond. This difference in tissue targeting generally makes 3D conformal radiation therapy safer and more effective than traditional radiation therapy.1
How Can I Receive 3D Conformal Radiation Therapy?
3D conformal radiation therapy is an advanced radiation treatment option for mesothelioma. Not every interventional radiologist has the experience and qualifications needed to perform this technique. Seeking treatment at a specialty treatment center is one of the best ways to obtain treatment with 3D conformal radiation therapy, performed by an interventional radiologist with expertise in this technique and other advanced and even more precise radiation treatments for mesothelioma such as intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).
In IMRT, not only are the radiation beams arranged in 3D, but the beams of photons themselves are shaped to better target the tumor and avoid damaging surrounding healthy tissue. IMRT is an especially advantageous technique when treating a tumor that is hard to reach and surrounded by radiosensitive organs, such as the lungs and heart, as is the case with malignant pleural mesothelioma and primary malignant pericardial mesothelioma.2
Three-Dimensional Conformal Radiation Therapy for Mesothelioma