CVMC Provides First Local True Beam Linear Accelerator


December 16, 2011

Catawba Valley Medical Center Provides First Local True BeamTMLinear Accelerator

First Cancer Center to have a True Beam Linear Accelerator in the Carolinas

HICKORY, NC—Catawba Valley Medical Center’s (CVMC) Comprehensive Cancer Center has completed installation of a new True Beam linear accelerator with IMRT, IGRT and RapidArcTM capabilities. This is the most advanced cancer treatment option currently available nationwide. CVMC is the first Cancer Center to have a True BeamTM in the Carolinas.

This revolutionary technology will allow more precise treatments of cancers and lesions, including brain tumors. This type of treatment uses targeted beams of radiation to destroy cancerous tissue and cells much like surgery would, but from outside the body without the need for incisions. Image-guided radiotherapy and radiosurgery can make treatment more comfortable, less time consuming and can reduce side effects.

“Prior to this technology, most patients with brain tumors would be sent out of town. Now, this treatment is available here,” says Len Hurst, Director of Radiation Oncology at CVMC. “With the True Beam, a Standard IMRT treatment, which normally lasts 10-15 minutes, can be completed in a time shorter than three minutes. A complex radiosurgery operation, which lasts 40 minutes to two hours, can be completed in 5-20 minutes. It also performs accuracy control every 10 milliseconds throughout treatment. Patients may experience reduced side effects due to shorter treatment time and higher treatment accuracy. This is a great piece of technology CVMC has invested in and it will greatly benefit members of our community.”

Services offered at CVMC’s Comprehensive Cancer Center include: nurse navigation, mobile mammography, a PET/CT Center, Radiation Oncology, an Infusion Center, a Community Cancer Resource Center, cancer support groups and the True Beam linear accelerator.

Catawba Valley Medical Center in Hickory, N.C., is the region’s largest not-for-profit, public healthcare system and serves the community without direct funding from taxes. CVMC provides and promotes physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being of the public in addition to serving as a center for health education, wellness services, preventive medicine and acute care. CVMC has received three Magnet designations from the American Nurses Credentialing Center and has been recognized for providing “An Outstanding Inpatient Experience” for a fourth consecutive year by J.D. Power and Associates. For more information, please visit