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Saint Joseph's Hospital First in Georgia to Offer Noninvasive Treatment of Brain Disorders with Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion

ATLANTA, Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- St. Joseph's Hospital of Atlanta is the first hospital in Georgia to offer treatment with Leksell Gamma Knife® Perfexion(TM), an advanced radiosurgery device specifically designed to treat brain tumors and other brain disorders without making an incision.

A gentler alternative to traditional brain surgery, Gamma Knife Perfexion delivers thousands of low-intensity radiation beams to one or more targets in a single session. This unmatched method provides pinpoint accuracy, high efficiency and outstanding results. For the patient, that means an extremely powerful treatment with shorter recovery time and little to no side effects.

Rebecca Heitkam, RN, BSN, CCRN, serves as manager of the Gamma Knife Center at Saint Joseph's Hospital. "Saint Joseph's always has strived to provide patients with the best care possible utilizing the most advanced technology available. Since September 2004, Leksell Gamma Knife C and 4C units gave us the opportunity to treat brain lesions with great accuracy and minimal discomfort. Most patients were discharged by noon and back to their normal activities within a few days. With the upgrade to Perfexion, we will be able to reach and treat lesions that previously were outside the range of the C and 4C. We are thrilled to be the first in Georgia to offer this treatment option for our patients."

One of four Gamma Knife centers in Georgia, St. Joseph's launched its Gamma Knife radiosurgery program in 2004. Since, more than 600 patients have been treated at the center.

According to Peter Possert, MD, radiation oncologist in the Gamma Knife Center at Saint Joseph's Hospital of Atlanta, "Twice in the past twelve months I have evaluated patients for Gamma Knife radiosurgery with lesions outside of the current confines of the Leksell 4C unit. Perfexion offers unlimited access to cranial lesions, and since we did not yet have the technology, both of these patients had to travel out-of-state to receive the treatment. Although there were other radiation options available, none could offer the precision, convenience, and comfort possible with Perfexion."

"The new collimator design of the Perfexion provides us with a virtually unlimited ability to target lesions within the brain, even those previously unreachable in the skull base and cervical spine," says Saint Joseph's Gamma Knife neurosurgeon Max Steuer, MD. "Head frame placement is no longer an issue, and lesions that are widely spaced are still able to be treated with a single placement of the stereotactic frame. This is a huge advantage for our patients with metastatic brain disease."

To learn more about Gamma Knife treatment at St. Joseph's, visit For the latest Perfexion news, visit

About St. Joseph's Hospital of Atlanta

Saint Joseph's, the region's premier provider of cardiac and vascular services and recognized as one of the 50 top hospitals in the country, is Atlanta's oldest hospital. Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1880, today Saint Joseph's is a 410-bed, acute-care hospital recognized as one of the leading specialty-referral hospitals in the Southeast.

As a leader in cardiac, neurologic, vascular, gastrointestinal, respiratory, orthopaedic and cancer care, among others, Saint Joseph's offers its patients the latest procedures and treatments by providing its medical staff of more than 750 physicians with research services and the most advanced technology available. In addition to serving the metro-Atlanta area, patients come from all over Georgia, nearby states and internationally because of Saint Joseph's specialized services, excellent reputation and unique patient experience. Sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, Saint Joseph's is a member of Catholic Health East.

About Elekta

Elekta is a human care company pioneering significant innovations and clinical solutions for treating cancer and brain disorders. The company develops sophisticated state of the art tools and treatment planning systems for radiation therapy and radiosurgery, as well as workflow enhancing software systems across the spectrum of cancer care.

Stretching the boundaries of science and technology, providing intelligent and resource-efficient solutions that offer confidence to both healthcare providers and patients, Elekta aims to improve, prolong and even save patient lives, making the future possible today.

Today, Elekta solutions in oncology and neurosurgery are used in over 5,000 hospitals globally, and every day more than 100,000 patients receive diagnosis, treatment or follow-up with the help of a solution from the Elekta Group.

Elekta employs around 2,500 employees globally. The corporate headquarter is located in Stockholm, Sweden, and the company is listed on the Nordic Exchange under the ticker EKTAb. For more information about Elekta, please visit


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