With the increase in the number of patients suffering from cancer, a third machine has been installed in the clinic to handle the treatments that will be put in place.
A third particle accelerator for the treatment of cancers by means of radiotherapy has been installed on the site of the Center of the Polyclinique de l’Ormeau. With this advanced technology, patients benefit from more precise treatment, with better protection for sensitive organs such as the heart. This project was led by the medical team of the Pyrénées Radiotherapy and Oncology Group. It is about improving the Territory’s care offering in the fight against cancer. Dr. Guillaume Peyraga introduced a new machine called Halcyon.
La Semin: What will this new instrument bring?
biraga clouds : Today we are opening the third device that makes it possible to treat patients by departments in the department. It is an innovative machine of the latest generation. For decades we’ve had speedsters. Cancer activity is increasing. Screening is increasing. There are more and more cancers. They are being treated better and better, so people are living longer and so there is a need for more treatments, of which radiation is a part.
To improve patient care and treat them as quickly as possible, it was important for the Ormeau clinic to have a new machine.
“We were with two machines at the right time. We couldn’t work from 6 am to 11 pm.
The goal then is to be able to treat all patients…
We were with two devices at the right time. We couldn’t work from 6 am to 11 pm. So a third accelerator was installed. This allows us to be able to treat patients as calmly, as quickly as possible and with better quality because this is the third accelerator of the latest generation. There is a better processing accuracy. There are fewer side effects which means an improved quality of life too.
How long have you been on the site?
This new machine arrived at the Ormeau Infirmary on Monday, February 27, 2023. There was snow! It was funny and dangerous to bring it with a basket. It was ordered a year ago after an invitation to bid. We did business with an American company that sells 80 to 90% of radiotherapy machines in France. In its appearance, it looks a bit like a Razer but in its implementation it is not at all. This is an investment of approximately 5 million euros. Our oldest accelerators will be changed next year. He is about ten years old. We rotate every 10 years. The second accelerator was installed just over 5 years ago.
“One accelerator can treat 50 patients per day. This, which is of the latest generation, will make it possible to treat 60.”
How many patients can be treated with these machines?
The accelerator can treat 50 patients per day. This, which is of the latest generation, will enable the treatment of 60 of them, and the patient will remain on this device for 10 minutes. This may take up to 20 minutes for special treatments where the patient’s breathing is controlled. We are now able to meet the demand. Before this third machine arrived, however, we felt like it was on edge. That is why we did not hesitate for a moment to invest. This allows us to maintain quality and above all respect processing times. We cannot tell a cancer patient that we will wait 3 months to start treatment. Time should not be wasted. It is necessary to be able to start treatment after various consultations after one month. Without this machine in the year, we knew it would be difficult to handle.
The vast majority of cancers occur in people after retirement.
Are there more patients to treat?
All cancers develop for a number of reasons. First, because we live longer. Second, because we better detect and track them. And certainly also because there are more factors in the environment, in our daily lives that lead to more cancers. We have had screenings that are developing well, such as breast cancer, colorectal cancer, prostate cancer … The vast majority of cancers occur in people who have passed the retirement age. Here, we treat all types of cancer except pediatric cancers of children who are treated by referral centres. They are exceptional and their treatment requires extensive experience. There you need to go to Toulouse and Bordeaux.
How is your team made to operate these machines?
We have many trades. There are doctors who start treatment. We then have electro-radiology technicians who do the scanning for the X-ray preparation and they do the X-rays on a daily basis. But before we get to the rays, we have dosimeters, physicists and, of course, secretaries. We have about fifteen electroradiology therapists to operate the three accelerators (5 per machine). We have 4 physicists and 3 dosimeters.
What do you think of artificial intelligence and do you actually use it?
It is indeed a daily help, especially when preparing treats. It facilitates our work even if it is always necessary to check. You have to master the artificial intelligence. When mastered and used wisely it saves time and above all it is better in the end!
What more does this new generation machine have?
Its shape is different, but the most important difference is that it allows daily repositioning. To treat a millimeter well, photographs should be taken in order to position the patient prior to treatment. This device allows you to do a kind of check just before each session to be able to position the patient correctly and see if the tumor is in the right place. The other two machines can scan once a week and take x-rays on a daily basis. With the new device, the daily repositioning process is better and more accurate. The technological push on these machines isn’t hitting any wave. There was one about ten years ago. There is news today.
“Bravo and thank you”
Dr. Bernard Couderc, creator of the Oncology Center at the Clinique de l’Ormeau in 1972 and who directed it until 2012, said a few words: “I found myself with great emotion in this treatment room where radiotherapy began 50 years ago in Begur. At first we were a small team Very. In this room many patients were treated. For them and for my deceased colleagues I have a loving thought and particularly strong memories. I know, dear Guillaume, that you have a great delicacy to preserve the very beautiful fresco that was in this room and that you will reinstall it in the meeting-room. You have been able to develop an exceptional offer of care in radiotherapy for patients from Bigordan, Bjarne and even Gascon in the triangle Pau – Tarbes – Lourdes and beyond You have a high-tech technical platform with 6 of the latest generation particle accelerators: 3 in Tarbes and 3 in Pau and with a team of Outstanding men and women to pilot them. In short, it’s the standard of excellence. You are proving that with a lot of goodwill and intelligence, there is room for big projects in two regions, Occitane and Neuquitin when, like you, we know how to cross borders. Congratulations on this success and thanks to all patients with cancer.”