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Question about cyberknife treatment plan
Zac's mom
Posted: Wednesday, November 17, 2010 1:56 PM
Joined: 11/17/2010
Posts: 4

I'm new and still in the consultation phase of my treatment plan. Reading this forum has been so helpful to me. My AN is 1.8 cc and has caused hearing loss and slight dizziness at times. I spoke with a candid, very nice radiation neurologist at the blood and cancer center in Bakersfield, CA. They have had a cyberknife since 2009. This facility is only 1/2 hour away from my home, so would be very convenient. This center has an excellent reputation and their staff is extremely patient-oriented. They have treated approximately 25 AN's with no reported problems. The doctor said the treatment would be done on a daily basis for one to five treatments. It is my understanding that the treatment is safer if done every other day. Is this a reason to ask for a referral to Stanford? I believe I could get permission from my insurance to go to Stanford. I'm very confused, but want to do what is best long-term. Thank you for any input.
Posted: Wednesday, November 17, 2010 2:16 PM
Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 39

Welcome! My AN is/was about the same size as yours, and I chose to have CK at a local facility.  I did this primarily because I wanted to have good, local followup, instead of having to coordinate between Stanford and South Carolina!  I've been kind of frustrated with my local followup, but very pleased with having CK overall.  No additional hearing loss, no increased tinnitus, no headaches, no facial problems . . . a fair bit of increased disequilibrium, but I'm not sure that wouldn't have happened even if I hadn't had treatment.  My CK team explained they use the "Stanford protocol," so I figured why go all the way to California?  My treatments were 3 days in a row.  Hope you've been over to the forum as well, it's a wealth of support and info.  Good luck!
Zac's mom
Posted: Wednesday, November 17, 2010 7:45 PM
Joined: 11/17/2010
Posts: 4

Thanks so much for responding. I would love to stay close to home. Your comments are encouraging. I'm surprised you had the "Stanford protocol" of 3 days in a row. Maybe I was under the wrong impression that they skip a day in between treatments. Or maybe it depends on the size of tumor and location of the tumor??? Also glad to hear you have no headaches. Having been a migraine sufferer most of my life, that is one of my concerns. I know that everyone is different, but its nice to hear your CK choice has been so positive.

Dr. J
Posted: Thursday, November 18, 2010 4:18 AM
Joined: 10/11/2008
Posts: 1070

I don't believe that there is any evidence that one way or the other is better. What probably means most is that the treatment is divided into 3 fractions at all, rather than given all at once as with GammaKnife, in terms of preserving hearing.


Jerome J. Spunberg, M.D., FACR, FACRO
CyberKnife Center of Palm Beach
(561) 799-2828


Radiation Oncology Institute
10335 N. Military Trail, Suite C
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
(561) 624-1717

Zac's mom
Posted: Thursday, November 18, 2010 6:45 PM
Joined: 11/17/2010
Posts: 4

Thank you, Dr. Spunberg, for responding to my concern. Do you know the reason some doctors choose to treat every other day?

Posted: Friday, November 19, 2010 6:51 AM
Joined: 10/10/2008
Posts: 4435

The only data I know of was some data from Stanford showing reduced toxicity with every other day treatment for prostate cancer. We have always treated everything on consecutive days, and have results that are as good as any. On the other hand, there is also no data showing every other day treatment is harmful.


Clinton A. Medbery, III, M.D.
St. Anthony Hospital Cyberknife Center
(405) 272-7311

Mail to:
Clinton A. Medbery, III, M.D.
Southwest Radiation Oncology
1011 N. Dewey Ave. #101
Oklahoma City, OK 73102


Zac's mom
Posted: Friday, November 19, 2010 7:20 AM
Joined: 11/17/2010
Posts: 4

Thank you Dr. Medbery. I feel much better about it now. This forum is great!

Posted: Sunday, January 02, 2011 4:50 PM
Joined: 11/18/2010
Posts: 16

I chose to have my ck treatment in my home town. I made the mistake of assuming I would have post treatment care. Ask, ask and re ask and do lots checking into your local facility. I am not having followup care. Good Luck

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