Healthcare Industry News: brachytherapy
News Release - August 22, 2007
B-K Medical and the American Urology Association Introduce Latest Urologic Ultrasound DevelopmentsNew York Urology Residents First to Participate in Innovative Program to Reduce Patients' Exposure to Radiation and Other Forms of Imaging
COPENHAGEN, Denmark & NEW YORK--(HSMN NewsFeed)--B-K Medical Systems, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Analogic Corporation (NASDAQ: ALOG ), and the New York Section of the American Urology Association (AUA) have joined together to create a first-of-its-kind training program for urology residents. The first session of the AUA Resident Ultrasound Course will be held in New York, New York, on Friday, August 24, and Saturday, August 25, 2007, at the New York Academy of Medicine. Courses will be held in other cities later this year.
"B-K Medical pioneered the development of dedicated imaging systems in urology, and we continue to be committed to innovation and education in the field," said Renaud Maloberti, general manager for B-K Medical, Americas. "We are supporting this program with the AUA because we believe that urologists with advanced training will provide improved patient care."
Dr. Louis Kavoussi, M.D., a course director, and professor of urology at the New York University School of Medicine, agreed. "Ultrasound imaging is a core part of the practice of urology," he said. "This course is an effective and efficient way to distribute new knowledge in ultrasound imaging. We can provide the same high-quality information and instruction that parallels courses residents will take once they're in practice."
Working in Partnership
"This is a model program for the entire country," said Dr. Bruce R. Gilbert, M.D., Ph.D., associate clinical professor of urology for the Weill Cornell Medical College, and a course director. "There's an important role for industry in medical education. Companies like B-K Medical are the true innovators, and programs like this allow them to introduce that innovation to clinicians. Education is the right mechanism for this interaction to occur."
For B-K Medical, the program is an extension of the work it has done with urologists for 25 years to develop new technologies and improve patient care. "The value of continuing medical education for practicing physicians is well documented," Maloberti said. "We firmly believe that a similar value can be gained from introducing the latest developments in urologic ultrasound to residents who can put that training to immediate use as they continue their studies. It's our hope that this initiative will not only result in improved diagnosis and treatment, but may inspire some residents to undertake research to further the specialty."
Using Ultrasound for Diagnosis
B-K Medical's ultrasound transducers, scanners and biopsy guides improve doctors' diagnostic capability with high-definition, real-time imaging that helps detect abnormalities. These affordable, high-quality ultrasound systems have made it possible for urologists to use ultrasonic imaging to perform prostate, kidney, scrotal, penile, renal, and bladder diagnostic examinations.
B-K Medical's 8818 transducer enables urologists to examine the prostate in any plane. A transducer is a hand-held device that sends out high-frequency sound waves and then "listens" for the wave to return. The frequency, strength and time it takes for the echoes to reach the transducer from the body create an ultrasound image visible on a scanner. This technology allows physicians to see the position of organs and identify lesions.
The 8818 provides excellent image quality and usability for prostate ultrasound examinations and biopsies. This allows urologists to visualize any area of the prostate and target it for biopsy. The 8818 includes a unique dual-biopsy guide that facilitates samples in all sections of the prostate.
Using Ultrasound for Treatment
Urologic clinicians also use ultrasound in the treatment of prostate disease with brachytherapy, in which radioactive "seeds" are used to eradicate localized cancers.
B-K Medical's 8848 transducer and Pro Focus scanner provide clear, detailed images of the prostate. This allows greater ease of use and improved accuracy in volume studies and source-dose planning for brachytherapy. High-frequency, multi-plane, transrectal transducers such as the 8848 assist urologists by guiding them in the placement of seeds, and by helping them monitor seeds' positions in both the longitudinal and transverse planes. All of B-K Medical's brachytherapy equipment is compatible with leading dose planning systems.
"This course is designed to acquaint resident urologists with the advantages and limitations of ultrasound as an imaging modality for urologic diseases. Increasing the residents' familiarity with this technology will benefit patients by enabling their physicians to use a diagnostic technique that limits the patient's exposure to radiation, is readily accessible in most offices, and is cost effective," explained Dr. Pat F. Fulgham, M.D., chairman, AUA National Urologic Ultrasound Faculty; and a practicing urologist in Dallas, Texas.
Through lectures and hands-on sessions, residents will learn about:
* Ultrasound safety
* Knobology (the operation of ultrasound controls to improve images)
* Ultrasound examinations and pathology
Taught by the National Urologic Ultrasound Faculty and supported by B-K Medical sonographers, the program ensures that urology residents gain a fundamental understanding of the physical principles of ultrasound, the indications and limitations of the technology, and appropriate documentation. At the end of the course, residents will take an ultrasound exam confirming that they have met course objectives.
"Many programs don't have funds to train residents in specialty areas like urologic ultrasound," added Dr. Bruce R. Gilbert. "There has never been a fundamentals course to give residents a start. By giving them the basic knowledge first, they can learn how to apply these new techniques while they continue their medical training."
About B-K Medical
B-K Medical, a wholly owned subsidiary of Analogic Corporation (NASDAQ: ALOG ), specializes in the development and production of diagnostic ultrasound equipment. The company is recognized as a world leader in developing ultrasound scanners specially designed for laparoscopic and intraoperative surgery and for the investigation of urological disorders. The product line also includes scanners for other applications, such as colon rectal, breast, vascular, muscular skeletal, pelvic floor and interventional, gynecological examinations, fetal scanning, and radiology.
B-K Medical is represented in 60 countries, with subsidiary sales companies in the U.S., Belgium, Germany, Italy, Norway, Sweden, and the U.K. An extensive network of distributors connects B-K Medical with Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and the rest of the world. The company has 330 employees, 230 of whom are located in Denmark.
Source: B-K Medical Systems
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