Scanner at Delhi hospital shows promise in cancer treatment

Updated: Feb 13, 2013, 22:04 PM IST

New Delhi: A state-of-the-art body scanner has been set up at the Apollo hospital which detects cancerous cells quickly, and may go a long way in timely selection of treatment for cancer patients, officials of the hospital said Wednesday.

The Positron Emission Tomography-Magnetic Resonance (PET-MR) has been combined with PET Computerised Tomography (CT) to create the PET Suite which scans patients quicker, thus reducing discomfort and helping in therapy selection and treatment.

"Since they (doctors) can simultaneously acquire data from the whole body, the scanning takes less time, thus, reducing the discomfort of the patient," Prathap C. Reddy, chairman of the Apollo Hospitals Group, told reporters here.

"As MR has no radiation, this machine can significantly reduce the overall radiation dose, making it safer for paediatrics and patients undergoing repeated studies for therapy monitoring," he added.

Compared to hospitals abroad, "the cost is 75 percent less and diagnostic accuracy is 100 percent," said Uma Ravishankar, head of the department of molecular imaging and nuclear medicine.

Besides detecting cancer, PET-MR can also play a major role in understanding cardiology and neurological diseases, doctors said.

The PET Suite will be formally launched Feb 16 by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit.

India has approximately three million cancer patients.