First Arthritis Patient Treated with RT at FHN Leonard C. Ferguson Cancer Center

The FHN Leonard C. Ferguson Cancer Center in Freeport, Illinois has recently treated an arthritis patient with radiation therapy for the first time. It was the first site in the region to use the treatment modality for arthritis, despite its clinical use in other countries. Dr. Bobby Koneru, a radiation oncology specialist, shared the exciting update.

The patient was treated with 0.5 Gy in 6 total fractions, delivered every other day. Radiation was delivered using a linac. The treatment was fully covered by insurance, and includes coverage through Medicare.

Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, affects 1 in 7 Americans. Common treatments range from lifestyle changes, NSAIDs – which carry risk with long-term use, to surgery. In some other countries, radiotherapy is a common treatment option. In Germany, over a third of radiotherapy treatments are for benign conditions. Multiple clinical trials with symptomatic pain relief have shown in 63% to 90% of all irradiated patients, with almost no acute side effects. Learn more about low dose radiation therapy for osteoarthritis here.

This news from the FHN team is a promising milestone for low dose radiation therapy to become a more widely understood and utilised treatment modality for benign conditions. We celebrate the successful treatment with their team and the patient.