Interventional radiologists at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) performed the first NanoKnife procedure in Illinois, using electricity to target hard to access tumors. This technological procedure uses electrical impulses to effectively break up tumors and destroy cancer cells in the liver or pancreas.
Interventional Radiologist Dr. Kenny Yoo talked to Chicago Health News Examiner Brandi Walker about the NanoKnife procedure.
1. Tell me about yourself and your current position at CTCA.
I am one of two Interventional Radiologist performing Nanoknife and other interventional radiology procedures at Cancer Treatment Centers of America at Midwestern. As an interventional radiologist, I specialize in minimally invasive, targeted treatments performed using imaging guidance, which sometimes replace open surgical procedures. I rely on the use of X-rays, ultrasound and other medical images to guide small instruments such as catheters through the blood vessels or other pathways to treat disease percutaneously (through the skin).
2. How does the NanoKnife procedure work?
Interventional radiologists use guided imagery to assist in locating the cancer and strategically place up to six needles around the exterior of the tumor. A generator device is then turned on to deliver a low, direct current of energy to the tissue, which produces Irreversible Electroporation of the tumor, causing the cells to be unbalanced and die. Depending on the complexity of the tumor, the procedure takes approximately two to four hours to complete, at which time the patient is under general anesthesia.
3. How has this procedure helped you as a doctor?
As doctor, who wants to provide the best and most effective treatment for his patients, NanoKnife allows me the possibility of offering patients, who have exhausted other treatment and therapy options, an additional treatment opportunity. As technology continues to evolve and advance, I will continue to grow with it in order to provide my patients with the latest cancer fighting options.
4. Do you consider this procedure efficient in treating tumors?
Yes, it is efficient and safe. Not only does the procedure reduce side effects and recovery time for the patient, but also it allows us to reduce the amount of people and time needed to treat the patient. Many procedures are done on an outpatient basis or during a short hospital stay.
For more information about CTCA, go to www.cancercenter.com.