Patient Care Services  > Surgery  > Gamma Knife Center 

Gamma Knife Center

 

Dr. Burke Dial, Medical Director for Palmetto Health
Gamma Knife Center, explains how Gamma Knife
Radiosurgery works and its benefits.
Learn more about the benefits of Gamma Knife by watching this
YouTube video and visiting Elekta's Gamma Knife website

Since opening in 1998, the Palmetto Health Gamma Knife Center has treated more than 2,500 patients.

Gamma Knife Radiosurgery is a well established method to treat tumors and other abnormalities in the brain. Leksell Gamma Knife is not actually a knife. This non-surgical procedure enables physicians to selectively destroy brain tumors or blood vessel abnormalities deep within the brain without an incision. High concentrations of radiation beams are precisely focused onto a specific target to destroy the abnormal cells without harming surrounding healthy tissue. Gamma Knife is used to treat various diagnoses including...

  • Benign tumors
  • Malignant tumors
  • Acoustic neuromas
  • Meningiomas
  • Pituitary adenomas
  • Craniopharyngiomas
  • Tumors at the skull base or pineal region
  • Vascular abnormalities
  • Trigeminal neuralgia   

Educational information on these indications for Gamma Knife is available on the International Radiosurgery Association website.

What is Gamma Knife?
Gamma Knife Radiosurgery is a non-invasive neurosurgical alternative used for the treatment of malignant and benign brain tumors, vascular malformations and trigeminal neuralgia. The energy of 192 narrow beams of cobalt radiation is focused on a specific target within the brain. Individually, these low-density beams are too weak to cause any significant damage; however, when they converge on the target, they arrest growth and destroy abnormal cells. Healthy brain tissue remains safe and intact. Gamma Knife offers a safe and effective alternative to surgery and whole brain radiation. Currently, nearly 50,000 patients each year benefit from this form of treatment. Gamma Knife Perfexion is the world's most advanced system for stereotactic radiosurgery in the brain.

What is Gamma Knife Extend? 
Gamma Knife Extend expands the treatment options for patients with tumors that are too large and/or critically located to be treated with conventional Gamma Knife. The difference with Extend compared to conventional Gamma Knife radiosurgery is the ability to break up the radiation treatment into four or five smaller doses of hypofractionated treatments using a mouthpiece frame that is repositional instead of the halo attachment. Hypofractionated doses allow the treatment of these larger, critically located tumors, while minimizing the side effects to surrounding structures. Palmetto Health Gamma Knife Center is the first facility in the southeastern United States to install Extend.

A Multidisciplinary Team Approach                                                                                              
Patients referred to our Gamma Knife program will be cared for by a multidisciplinary team of specialists including neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and nurses specifically trained in Gamma Knife. Referring physicians also are encouraged to be active partners in the treatment process.

For more information about the Gamma Knife Center, e-mail us or call us: in Columbia, South Carolina, call (803) 434-3497 or toll free at 1-800-928-7974.