Muscat: The Radiotherapy team at Sultan Qaboos Comprehensive Cancer Care and Research Center (SQCCCRC) has successfully completed the first of Low Dose Rate (LDR) brachytherapy seed implants for prostate cancer. Which is considered one of the more preferred treatments for prostate cancer.
The operation was conducted by Dr Nadeem Pervis, a Senior Consultant Radiation Oncologist, with a team of specialised doctors, medical physicists, anaesthetists, therapists and nurses. The operation was 2 hours long, where 82 radioactive seeds of Iodine 125 were implanted in and around the prostate.
Dr Nadeem stated that LDR brachytherapy seed implants are a preferred mode of treatment for prostate cancer, as it localizes and focuses the radiation at the site of treatment without affecting the normal organs around the prostate, compared to how external beam radiotherapy delivers treatment from outside the body over multiple sessions lasting weeks, while LDR is a one-time procedure and the patient goes home on the same day.
Dr Nadeem added this treatment was not available in the middle east and region, and for that SQCCCRC has set the stage as a leader in this area.
The brachytherapy procedure involves insertion of needles containing radioactive seeds smaller than grains of rice, these seeds release radiation locally over a number of days, destroying the cancer cells stopping them from dividing and growing.
Iqbal Al Amri, a Sr Medical Physicist from SQCCCRC explained: “This treatment is not for everyone, and that there are certain criteria that need to be achieved in order to be eligible for LDR Brachytherapy. In addition, this type of treatment requires a high degree of expertise and quality assurance, to guarantee its success. We are fortunate at the center to have both of these requirements. In addition, special instructions are given to patients to ensure a safe and quick recovery.
Dr Zahid Al Mandhari, Sr Consultant Radiation Oncologist and head of the department, highlighted that what is being done at the Sultan Qaboos Comprehensive Cancer Center, is aimed at fulfilling the guidance given during its foundation, to become a leading center of excellence in Oman and the region. This is in keeping with priorities set forth in Oman Vision 2040 for the health sector.