Swedish Cancer Institute brings adaptive radiation therapy to the Pacific Northwest

November 16, 2022 Swedish Cancer Team


The Varian EthosTM therapy system utilizes artificial intelligence to adapt each patient’s treatment plan prior to treatment.

The Swedish Cancer Institute (SCI) is offering new technology that provides a highly personalized approach to radiation treatments for patients with cancer. The linear accelerator called Ethos by Varian Medical System offers tools that make it possible to deliver radiation very precisely to a patient’s tumor while sparing the surrounding normal tissues. The key innovation of Ethos is a technique called online adaptive radiotherapy. The Ethos system can acquire a high-quality CT scan of the patient immediately before treatment. The system then uses artificial intelligence to generate the optimal radiation treatment plan. Because the system acquires daily images, it can compensate for any changes in the patient’s anatomy including shifting of tissues due to eating and drinking as well as weight loss or gain.
“With the ability to reoptimize the plan each day, we will have an unprecedented capability to shape the radiation dose distribution,” said Vivek Mehta, M.D., a radiation oncologist at SCI. 
Adaptive radiotherapy is useful for many types of cancer including prostate and bladder cancers due to the propensity of internal anatomy to change over time within the pelvis. Additional disease sites that are showing great promise include cancers of the head-and-neck and pancreas. 
Ethos also provides advantages for patients who do not require daily plan adaptations. The system improves delivery efficiency of conventional treatments by up to 50% meaning that for many patients the daily treatment process will take less than 10 minutes.
“We are excited to offer this new technology that advances personalized cancer care for our patients,” said Sara Jo Grethlein, M.D., executive medical director of SCI. “With the Ethos therapy system, our clinicians can deliver radiation treatments with greater precision and efficiency.”
SCI is among the early adopters of the Ethos system and the first cancer care center in the Pacific Northwest to offer the Ethos therapy system to its patients. 
For more information on Ethos, visit varian.com/ethos

About Providence Swedish

Providence Swedish has served the Puget Sound region since the first Providence hospital opened in Seattle in 1877 and the first Swedish hospital opened in 1910. The two organizations affiliated in 2012 and today comprise the largest health care delivery system in Western Washington, with 22,000 caregivers, eight hospitals and 244 clinics. A not-for-profit family of organizations, Providence Swedish provides more than $406 million in community benefit in the Puget Sound Region each year. The health system offers a comprehensive range of services and specialty and subspecialty care in a number of clinical areas, including cancer care, cardiovascular health, neurosciences, orthopedics, digestive health and women’s and children’s care.  

About the Author

The Swedish Cancer Team is committed to bringing you the most up-to-date insights about treatments, prevention, care and support available. We know cancer diagnoses strain you both mentally and physically, and we hope to provide a small piece of hope to you or your loved ones who are fighting the cancer battle with useful and clinically-backed advice.

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