Versatile Elekta radiation therapy device nurtured this Brazilian gardener back to health
You’ll often find Edmilson tending to his garden in the lush surroundings of his São Paulo home. It’s his pride and joy. Indeed, he deserves a place of respite after the past year of treatments to manage the cancer that invaded his lung and cranium. “In May 2021, I began receiving chemotherapy, which led to unpleasant side effects,” he says. “After that, I followed my doctor’s recommendation and had radiosurgery for the cancer in my brain and radiation therapy for my lung cancer. I never knew of these treatments before, but they have been significant for my recovery.”
Living in a large city like São Paulo made access to treatment relatively easy for Edmilson; the Hospital Santa Paula is just a half-hour car ride from his home. The hospital boasts of its Elekta linear accelerator (linac) on which Edmilson was treated. The linac can perform stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) – precisely focusing radiation beams to treat the tumor in his brain – and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT), like SRS but for tumors in the body. This was used to treat his lung cancer.
Edmilson says: “I didn’t like wearing the mask that held my head in place during the SRS treatment, but the time passed quickly as I meditated and prayed the Rosary. Fortunately, both that and the SBRT treatment went very fast and I didn’t experience any of the effects that I had with chemotherapy.”
“The outcomes of the treatment were amazing. Not only was my treatment faster than I expected, it was managed by an outstanding medical team.”
He adds: “The outcomes of the treatment were amazing. Not only was my treatment faster than I expected, it was managed by an outstanding medical team using high technology in a hospital known as a center of excellence.”
Back in his garden, surrounded by family and flowers, Edmilson is flourishing just like his plants. “My family was shocked when they learned I had cancer, but after the treatment at Hospital Santa Paula, everyone is surprised with my recovery so far.”