Gamma Knife Treats 1000th Patient

MUSC Hollings Cancer Center Treats 1,000th Patient with Gamma Knife Technology

Physicians and paitent with gamma knife

Multidisciplinary program provides neuroscience and radiation oncology expertise to patients

Charleston, SC – The Neurosciences Gamma Knife Center, a service of Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina, announces today the treatment of its 1,000th patient. The Gamma Knife program at MUSC is a collaborative endeavor between neuroscience and radiation oncology disciplines, providing patients the expertise of physicians from multiple specialties.

The 1,000th patient will be treated with the latest generation of Gamma Knife technology. Upgraded in fall 2014 at the center, the Leksell Gamma KnifeTM Perfexion® is one of only two systems in South Carolina and is the only one affiliated with a dedicated cancer center.

“This milestone in patient care is a special honor for our clinical team and staff,” said Dr. Joseph Jenrette III, chairman of the department of radiation oncology at MUSC and Gamma Knife Center co-director. “We’ve had the opportunity to help a substantial number of patients who desire or require an alternative to surgery or conventional radiation therapy for brain tumors and functional disorders of the brain.”

Gamma Knife is used to deliver stereotactic radiosurgery, a nonsurgical method of treating tumors and abnormalities in the head and neck with high-dose gamma radiation. Considered the gold standard for treatment of brain tumors and disorders with highly precise radiation, Gamma Knife radiosurgery is usually a one-time treatment completed in a single day.

Treatment with Gamma Knife involves no surgical incisions, no blood loss and virtually no pain.

In addition to treating brain tumors, Gamma Knife is used to treat non-cancer conditions such as vascular malformations in the brain, trigeminal neuralgia, movement disorders and some ear, nose and throat conditions. Gamma Knife’s ability to deliver highly precise doses of radiation to pinpoint locations in the head and neck minimizes radiation exposure to healthy tissue.

“The aggressive use of Gamma Knife has radically improved the prognosis for cancer patients with brain metastases while limiting the collateral damage incurred with other forms of radiation,” said Dr. Istvan Takacs, neurosurgeon and co-director of the Gamma Knife Center. “It is an extraordinary development and truly a game changer."

Located at MUSC’s main hospital campus in downtown Charleston, the MUSC Neurosciences Gamma Knife Center coordinates care with MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, the only NCI-designated cancer center in South Carolina. For more information, call (843) 792-3271 or visit or

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