Artificial intelligence against tumors: The cancer cannon with the radiation turbo

Stuttgart – It is always a shock for patients when they receive this diagnosis: malignant tumor!

But for her there is now a treatment that is unique in Germany at the Stuttgart Clinic. The most modern radiation therapy device, with which tumors can be irradiated even more precisely, gives them new hope: the colossus weighs 5 tons and is worth more than 4 million euros. The cancer cannon with the jet turbo!

The “Ethos” system is the most modern of its kind, handling 40 patients a day. It uses X-rays to identify individual organs in the patient’s body. In this way, anti-cancer rays are directed specifically at tumor cells – and the side effects are minimized.

Medical Director Professor Dr. Marc Münter (49): “With the new device we can irradiate much more precisely.”

Cancer patient Heinz Schilling (68) is pushed into the tube

Photo: Michael Hahn

In addition, everything goes much faster. On average, each patient only has to be in the tube for three to four minutes. Beforehand, the connected high-performance computer with artificial intelligence calculates a treatment plan within 15 minutes.

dr Münter: “It used to take five working days. The device learns with each patient. So it just keeps getting better and faster.”

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Patients are put on this mask for radiation in the head area

Photo: Michael Hahn

A man who is currently in the tube almost every day is Heinz Schilling (68) from Karlsruhe. After a routine check-up in November 2021, he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Schilling: “The screen above the tube, which shows changing landscape images, is great. Along with pop music coming out of speakers, I stay relaxed, don’t move.”

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Radiology assistants control the cancer cannon via eleven computer screens

Photo: Michael Hahn

Radiology assistant Ella Lofink-Rommel (34): “If a patient moves too much, we have to stop the radiation and start over.”

Children and young people from the Olgahospital of the Klinikum Stuttgart in particular benefit from the radiation cannon.

A hospital spokesman: “This precise therapy with reduced side effects is particularly valuable for young cancer patients.”


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