MVH is a Certified OPTUNE Treatment Center

(June 2, 2017 - Carroll Township, Pa.)

Monongahela Valley Hospital recently became a Certified Treatment Center for Optune, making MVH one of only three hospitals in Western Pennsylvania who are certified to treat Glioblastoma Multiforme with Optune.

Glioblastoma, also called glioblastoma multiforme, or GBM, is the most aggressive type of primary brain tumor. While GBM is rare, it is the most common type of primary brain cancer in adults. Approximately 12,500 new cases of GBM or brain tumors that may progress to GBM are diagnosed in the United States each year.

Generally, a person with GBM would undergo a maximal debulking surgery, a six-week course of External Beam Radiation Therapy combined with Temodar (an oral chemo therapy). Following these therapies, the prognosis was statistically less than two years to live.

In 2015, the FDA approved the use of Optune for people diagnosed with GBM. The Optune cap is a portable, noninvasive device that delivers low-intensity, wave-like electric fields called Tumor-Treating Fields at a frequency that is specific to the "glial cell." The alternating current within Tumor Treating Fields will disrupt the replicating structures within the cancer cells causing cell death. Optune has increased the survival rate, so that 48 percent live longer than two years. Some patients have reached five years and the longest surviving patient is 10 years.

"Our goal at Monongahela Valley Hospital is to treat cancer patients with the latest, approved therapies available, so we are pleased to add Optune as part of a combination treatment for those fighting GBM," said Mohsen Isaac, M.D., director of Radiation Oncology at MVH. "We also know how important quality of life is to patients and Optune is a therapy that allows patients to go about their daily activities with minimal disruption to their lives."

The Optune cap will be a featured topic at the 2017 MVH Oncology Symposium on June 28. Neuro-oncologist, Samuel Goldlust, M.D., from the Brain and Spine Tumor Institute at John Theurer Cancer Center, will speak on Optune in Newly Diagnosed and Recurrent Glioblastoma.

The 2017 MVH Oncology Symposium is free to attend. Registration is required. To register, call 724-258-1750.

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