AccuBoost®: A new option when making an important decision

Women with early-stage breast cancer increasingly choose to treat the cancer and save their breast. Breast Conservation Therapy (BCT) starts with the surgical removal of cancerous tissue in a procedure known as lumpectomy.   

In Breast Conservation Therapy, there are typically two different paths that a patient might select. One approach is External Beam Radiation Therapy (XBRT), also known as Whole Breast Irradiation (WBI), and the second approach is Accelerated Partial Breast Irradiation (APBI). AccuBoost technology is able to support either of these approaches. The best option for any patient should be part of her discussion with her radiation oncologist, but both approaches have shown excellent results.

Whole Breast Irradiation: In this approach, the lumpectomy is followed by daily sessions of radiation therapy to the whole breast for four to six weeks. Whole breast irradiation (WBI) is looked at by many as the “gold standard” for breast radiotherapy based on over three decades of experience. The WBI protocol also often requires additional localized radiation, known as the “boost” dose, aimed only at the tissue surrounding the tumor bed. The combination of surgery and completion of radiation therapy has been effective in preventing cancer recurrence. Numerous studies show that women with early stage disease have a clear option to preserve the breast and fight off the cancer.

Accelerated Partial Breast Irradiation:  Developed over the last 15 years, this approach treats only the tissue immediately around the lumpectomy cavity, sparing radiation from the balance of the breast.  This approach has gained a great deal of popularity as it is complete in 5 to 10 days and typically will more easily fit the lifestyles of active women or those at a great distance from a treatment center.  AccuBoost is unique for use in APBI, as it is the only non-invasive brachytherapy option available. Typically, with most other techniques a catheter or series of catheters is left in the breast for 10 to 15 days creating discomfort and potentially giving rise to infection or other catheter related complications.  It can also be painful when these are removed at the end of treatment. Treatment centers that offer AccuBoost also have the option of delivering the radiation EITHER once per day for 10 days, or twice per day for 5 days.  The choice between these options would be made together between doctor and patient based on her specific needs. Appropriate candidates for APBI include women with all invasive histologies and ductal carcinoma in situ with node negative tumors.

The benefits of AccuBoost®

  • Non-Invasive Non-invasive radiation delivery in a simple outpatient procedure
  • Accuracy – Accurate dose targeting due to daily real-time imaging 
  • Skin Sparing – Lower skin dose and skin complications
  • Toxicity – Less toxicity and better cosmetic results
  • Healthy Tissue Sparing – Radiation is delivered parallel to the chest wall sparing unintentional exposure to the heart and lungs
  • Conformal radiation –  field matches the target size, shape and location.


  • Comfort – Unlike other APBI techniques, with AccuBoost there are NO CATHETERS and all the inconveniences and discomfort associated with them!
  • Schedule Flexibility (5 or 10 days)– Unlike other APBI techniques, you can receive treatment once a day for two weeks or twice a day for one week
  • No Catheter Complications – With no catheters, there is no risk of catheter related infection, displacement or mechanical problems
  • No Catheter Care  – No Additional care “changing your dressing” at home during the length of your treatment
  • No Catheter Removal – No potentially painful removal of the catheter at the end of treatment
  • Non-Invasive Non-invasive radiation delivery in a simple outpatient procedure
  • Healthy Tissue Sparing – Radiation is delivered parallel to the chest wall sparing unintentional exposure to the heart and lungs
  • Conformal – Conformal radiation field matches the target size, shape, and location
  • Accuracy- Daily imaging allows your doctor to follow any changes in the target over the course of your therapy

AccuBoost’s® strive for perfection

AccuBoost® is the latest innovation in breast radiotherapy. It enables your radiation oncologist to achieve the goal of targeting the boost dose to the lumpectomy cavity margin. The lumpectomy cavity margin is the tissue that is the most likely site of future recurrence. Treatment enabled by AccuBoost technology combines a noninvasive method of delivering a well focused beam with the power of real-time image guidance. This treatment targets the radiation dose accurately and reliably to the surgical excision site (target tissue). Additionally, the AccuBoost process strongly limits unintentional exposure to otherwise healthy tissue and minimizes radiation-related side effects.

AccuBoost® FAQ

Q. Why breast conservation therapy?
A. Numerous reports indicate that patients with early stage breast cancer who choose the lumpectomy option followed by a full course of radiation therapy that includes a boost dose, have as good a chance as those electing mastectomy for cancer free survival while preserving their breast.

Q. Why is a “boost” dose necessary?
A. The boost dose is an important ingredient of the full course of radiation therapy. It is delivered to the tissue adjacent to the surgical excision site, a region from which most recurrences originate. The added boost dose to the surgical margin also provides additional protection against recurrence.

Q. What makes the AccuBoost process unique from other boost delivery techniques?
A. The AccuBoost process is the latest innovation which includes real-time imaging techniques that your doctor can use to target the boost dose to the intended site. In addition, the AccuBoost Applicators gives your doctor the ability to deliver a conformal dose only to the target tissue. This spares unintended exposure to health tissue.

Q. Why is AccuBoost therapy the right choice?
A. The AccuBoost process, including real-time image guidance, allows your doctor to concentrate the radiation to the required site with minimal exposure to surrounding healthy tissue and neighboring organs. Ask your radiation oncologist about the benefits of the AccuBoost process and how they apply to you.

Q. What are the side effects of this treatment?
A. Clinical publications have shown that the AccuBoost process is associated with fewer side effects and it lessens radiation related complications. The noninvasive nature of the AccuBoost process eliminates treatment related infection and drainage issues associated with invasive radiotherapy.

Q. Will I glow in the dark?
A. The lumpectomy site is exposed to radiation only during the visit to the hospital. No traces of radioactivity are present anywhere in, or on, the patient after the session. The patient is free to follow routine social life without fear of causing harm or contaminating others.

Q. Will health insurance cover the cost?
A. Radiation boost and image guidance to target the dose are accepted procedures for the treatment of breast cancer and are also covered by most plans. However, specific coverage for the AccuBoost procedure will depend on your individual healthcare plan.

Nutrition During Cancer Treatment

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