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CyberKnife® uses an advanced, lightweight linear accelerator (LINAC), mounted on a robotic arm, to deliver an intense focused dose of radiation to the targeted tumor. Hundreds of these tiny, high-energy radiation “beamlets” are delivered from multiple directions. Each beamlet by itself delivers a miniscule amount of radiation. They intersect only on the tumor, where the dose from the beams adds up to deliver the intense focused radiation. Using x-ray -guided cameras, the CyberKnife system locates the exact position of the tumor with surgical precision.
The robotic delivery system integrates motion-tracking software, called the Synchrony System, making it accurate enough to treat a moving target. When a patient breathes or moves during treatment, the robot detects the motion and compensates in 'real time,' ensuring that the radiation is accurately hitting the target with sub-millimeter precision.
With the maneuverability of the robotic arm, surgeons can administer multiple radiation beams from up to 1,200 different targeting positions and angles. All of the beams intersect within the tumor where the total dose is high enough to obliterate the cancer, while minimizing radiation exposure to surrounding healthy tissue.