May 02, 2007

PHOENIX – A study conducted at Arizona Oncology Services (AOS) suggests the
new SAVI™ applicator may reduce the amount of radiation delivered to healthy tissue
during breast cancer treatment. The study was led by Salih Gurdalli, Ph.D., a physicist for
AOS. The results were released in a poster presentation at the 2007 annual meeting of the
American Brachytherapy Society in Chicago, April 29-May 1.
The study concluded that SAVI showed significantly lower doses of radiation at
the skin surface while still maintaining coverage of the targeted tissue. The device’s
single-entry, multi-catheter design allows physicians to contour the dose of radiation away
from healthy tissue, such as the skin surface.
AOS is the first medical facility in the nation to offer the device as part of breast
conservation therapy. Robert Kuske, M.D. and Coral Quiet, M.D., both of AOS, are coauthors of the study.
The study compared the SAVI device to balloon brachytherapy, currently the most
commonly used form of breast brachytherapy. Researchers inserted both devices into
simulated lumpectomy cavities and applied the prescribed radiation dose.
“From a medical physics perspective, this study provides further evidence that
SAVI may have some distinct advantages over earlier breast brachytherapy methods,” said
Dr. Gurdalli.
“Essentially, SAVI combines the single-entry benefit of the balloon device with
the flexible dosimetry of interstitial brachytherapy,” said Dr. Kuske. “The results suggest
that some women with early-stage breast cancer who are not candidates for the balloon
device could benefit from treatment with SAVI. The greater flexibility in using the SAVI
catheter can also aid physicians in treating the part of the breast needing radiotherapy
Medical Directors
Burton L. Speiser, MD, MS
David C. Beyer, MD
Jonathan B. Ashman, MD
Christopher A. Biggs, MD, PhD
David G. Brachman, MD
Thomas P. Canty, MD
Luci M. Chen, MD
Nicholas E. Flores, MD
Timothy B. Galang, MD
Emily J. Grade, MD
John J. Kresl, MD, PhD
Robert R. Kuske Jr., MD
Terry T.K. Lee, MD
Gerald L. Lucas, MD
Kenneth H. Luk, MD
Gregory A. Maggass, MD
Hiroki Mitsuyama, MD
Coral A. Quiet, MD
Diane C. Recine, MD
Daniel R. Reed, DO
Jeffrey G. Richmond, MD
Irene K. Taw, MD
Thomas J. Taylor, MD
Farley E. Yang, MD
Chief Operating Officer
Timothy T. McKeough
Corporate Center
300 W. Clarendon
Ste. 350
Phoenix, AZ 85013
602 274.4484 tel
602 287.9406 fax
800 360.6371 toll free
www.azoncology.comwhile reducing dose to the skin, muscles, ribs, lungs, and heart, which do not need
radiation exposure. ”
Breast conservation therapy includes lumpectomy – surgical removal of the
cancerous tissue within the breast plus tissue immediately around the tumor – followed by
While post-lumpectomy radiation has traditionally involved irradiation of the entire
breast with an external beam, Arizona Oncology Services has been a leader in developing
techniques in breast brachytherapy, an approach that targets the tumor site from inside the
Whole breast irradiation can be inconvenient for the patient, as it involves a lengthy
treatment course, with radiation delivered five times a week over a 6 – 7 week period. For
eligible women, breast brachytherapy typically involves two treatments per day for only
five days.
The SAVI applicator was developed by BioLucent, Inc., (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) a
women’s health company dedicated to the early detection and treatment of breast cancer.
Arizona Oncology Services (AOS) is a radiation oncology practice that was formed
in 1981. With a team of 23 physicians and 13 locations in the greater Phoenix area and
Yuma, AOS is a nationally recognized leader in numerous radiation techniques including
accelerated partial breast therapy, brachytherapy, prostate seed implants, stereotactic
radiosurgery, and monoclonal antibody radiation therapy. AOS physicians and staff
partner with patients, families, and referring physicians to provide superior radiation
oncology care with a focus on leading edge treatment, empathy and compassion. For more
information, call 602-274-4484 or access