Saving millions of patients from radiotherapy damage
Dr. Shakardokht Jafari is a medical physicist who discovered the applications of glass beads for radiotherapy dosing while studying her PhD at the University of Surrey. Dr. Jafari has made it her mission to use the research to improve cancer care and help patients worldwide.
The technology uses the radiation detecting properties of glass beads to measure radiation dosing in patients. This enables clinicians to know the precise dose and location given to a patient, and they are able to make necessary adjustments. This decreases the amount of damage to surrounding tissue, giving patients a better outcome.
A unique high performance thermoluminescent detector (TLD) array consisting of 100+ small (1mm) micro silica glass beads packed on wire for use in a standard catheter. The beads are able to detect radiation levels in the patient’s body, giving clinicians an exact measurement of where, and how much, radiation the patient is being exposed to.
The TLDs are chemically inert and ideal for disposable or repeated use. Once the TLD array is removed from the patient, the radiation levels and spread will be able to be measured by our fully automated high-performance thermo-luminescent reader. The results will be ready, typically, after 15 minutes, and are a unique “radiation ruler” or profile of radiation measurements along or across the tumour area and beyond. There is no manual loading of individual TLDs and the software will analyse and distribute the results.
Through micro silica thermoluminescent radiation detectors are a new and exciting technology, their efficacy has been thoroughly documented in peer reviewed studies. TrueInvivo plans to launch a new type of automated fast TLD reader in 2018.
10-25% of patients currently affected by damage from radiotherapy
TrueInvivo prevents clinicians from working “blind” by accurately measuring the location and dose of radiotherapy.
Beads placed in tumour
TrueInvivo glass beads on a catheter are placed in the patient’s tumour.
A radiotherapy is targeted to patient’s tumour. Though the radiation is intended to be a specific to the tumour as possible, the clinician is unable to see what exactly is happening in the body.
The glass beads show how much radiation the patient experienced, and exactly where it hit. The clinician is able to make necessary adjustments to the next dose to minimise damage to surrounding tissues.
Annual savings of £60M in the UK
Not only are the micro silica thermoluminescent detectors inexpensive and reusable, there is the potential for huge savings associated with less damage to patients.
- Saves 9,000 patients annually in the UK alone
- It costs the NHS £10,000 per patient damaged by misaligned radiotherapy. TrueInvivo dramatically reduces this cost, saving £60M annually.
- Beads are inexpensive, reusable, and work in difficult environments.
- Potential applications in a variety of fields such as: nuclear, food, irradiation, blood banks and more.
- Outputs data in 15 minutes, allowing clinician to adjust dose immediately.