Healthcare Industry News:   ASTRO  

Devices Oncology

 News Release - October 16, 2007

Varian Medical Systems Introduces iX Range of HDR Afterloaders to Optimise Brachytherapy Treatments

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., Oct. 16 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR ) is introducing an advanced range of afterloaders that simplify HDR (high dose rate) brachytherapy delivery and optimise treatment of cancer patients. The iX range of afterloaders will be officially introduced at the annual ASTRO (American Society of Therapeutic Radiation Oncologists) exhibition in Los Angeles on October 29th.

At the heart of the new range of iX afterloaders is new Windows-based control software, common to both the VariSource(TM) iX and GammaMedplus(TM) iX afterloaders, the computer-controlled devices used for delivering the radiation sources. The new software integrates seamlessly with Varian's BrachyVision(TM) treatment planning system. The new iX systems are now in operation at a number of sites and are currently being shipped to customers.

"We have introduced a world class product with a console that integrates with all our brachytherapy delivery products and software, making it easier to use and more straightforward to plan treatments," says William Hyatt, head of Varian's brachytherapy business. "It's a major leap forward in brachytherapy treatment delivery.

"We recognize the unique challenges of delivering High Dose Rate treatments. Time pressure is high and the importance of treating quickly and precisely is paramount. That is why we've worked with customers, engineers and software developers to produce an Afterloader Control interface that is both intuitive and simple to use." He said the product's human interface was developed in conjunction with IDEO, a leading international industrial design company

Dr. Peter Niehoff, brachytherapy consultant at University Hospital Kiel, in Germany -- the first hospital in the world to treat patients using the new system -- says, "The iX has really improved the situation for us and our patients, as it is much more logical and gives you a better overview of the treatment's status."

He said the iX system made it easier for his team, who mainly use brachytherapy to treat prostate and gynecological cancer, to make alterations to the treatment plan once treatment is underway and program the afterloaders to make these changes. "If you deliver the first fraction and then need to change the plan, it's vital that you can easily access this information," he said. "Some of these treatments are extremely complex -- just recently we did an interstitial chest well treatment involving 16 channels and 300 dwell positions -- so anything that makes alterations more straightforward is extremely valuable."

Dr. Peter Hoskin, head of brachytherapy at Mount Vernon Hospital in London, UK, adds, "The iX incorporates user security that improves the integrity of the treatment procedure. The treatment history is stored in a more robust fashion -- indeed the system as a whole is more robust and better engineered. The iX has been well received by both physicists and radiographers."

From logging on to the system to treatment delivery, the new iX console software walks the operator through the process one step at a time, presenting information in a controlled and logical manner to ensure no detail is overlooked.

Editorial contact: Neil Madle, Varian Medical Systems, +44 7786 526068, neil.madle@varian.com

About Varian Medical Systems

Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, is the world's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The company supplies informatics software for managing comprehensive cancer clinics, radiotherapy centers and medical oncology practices. Varian is a premier supplier of tubes and digital detectors for X-ray imaging in medical, scientific, and industrial applications and also supplies X-ray imaging products for cargo screening and industrial inspection. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 4,400 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 56 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit http://www.varian.com/.

Forward Looking Statements

Statements in this press release regarding future business, events, plans, objectives, expectations, estimates, and other similar matters, including, but not limited to, statements using the terms "can" and "expect," constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements contained in this press release are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated, including, but not limited to, the risks described in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and other reports filed from time to time by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent the Company's judgment as of the date of this press release. The Company assumes no obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements because of new information, future events, or otherwise.


Source: Varian Medical Systems

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