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Insider North

Insider North Volume 1, Issue 3
Front page...

A Mercedes ambulance for Cadillac care
Nightingale nominee's advice: “Step back, think critically. Think BIG”
Getting ready for life
Want a hamburger? That will cost you extra in the cafeteria
A road map for the Epic journey
Joint Commission survey “smoothest yet”
Cancer patient, helmet camera give first-hand look at advanced treatment
Taking the Asthma tiger by the fiery tail
The extended journeys of Alene Nitzky
Hospital video updates: July 25, 2012
HomeGrown flourishes, puts fresh fruit an vegetables in locals' hands

Cancer patient, helmet camera give first-hand look at advanced treatment


The treatment was “nothing to be afraid of,” patient tells the world

Using a GoPro helmet camera, a local patient gave the world a look at advanced cancer treatment.
By Sandra Larson

This may be the first time for such a video on YouTube—a patient wears a helmet video cam to record prostate cancer radiation treatments so the public can see what the experience is like.

The new video has already achieved some fame. Cure Today, a cancer-related website, and Ragan Health Care Communication News linked the video to their websites and reported on the patient’s novel approach.

The patient, who requested anonymity, came up with the idea during his 45 days of daily treatment. He wore his doctor’s ski helmet with an attached video camera, which captures a 180-degree view and is often used in adventure and travel filming.

He was one of UCHealth’s first patients to be treated by Colorado’s only TrueBream STx linear accelerator,  which went online this spring as part of a $7.1-millon expansion of the Radiation Oncology Department on Harmony Campus. The technology delivers the world’s most advanced external-beam radiation with pinpoint accuracy to destroy cancer cells.

“Everybody’s visual these days,” the patient explains. “It was simple to add a camera so other people can see what they may need to go through, and the fact is that it (treatment) is really easy and simple and nothing to be afraid of.”

The patient thought of the helmet-cam idea because he was surprised the treatments were so fast and easy. Each treatment session took less than 20 minutes. The actual radiation was just a few minutes, with the remaining time used for the high-precision imaging system to localize the prostate.

In the three-minute video, his physician, Dr. Josh Petit, Radiation Oncology medical director, narrates the patient’s CAT scan in preparation for delivering radiation treatment. The CAT scanner is built into the TrueBeam STx’s image-guidance technology, which improves accuracy via a real-time imaging.

Dr. Petit, who was instrumental in bringing the TrueBeam STx technology to UCHealth, says his patient was happy to educate others. “This way he can help take away the uncertainty or hesitancy others might have. His experience was quick and easy, with no significant side effects.”

Sandra Larson is a marketing specialist for UCHealth. She oversaw production of the patient video.
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