Interventional oncology uses minimally invasive procedures to diagnose and treat cancerous lesions. Image guidance aids these procedures, for example, to perform ablation and cryothermy.
Within cancer care, current treatment options can be broadly described as medical oncology, radiation treatments, surgical interventions, or interventional oncology.
Image guided therapy
Accelerate Associates has recently interviewed Consultant Clinical Oncologists, Surgeons specialising in cancer care and Interventional Radiologists regarding the use of imaging in cancer diagnosis and treatment and recent developments in cancer therapies.
Image guided therapies have advanced considerably in the last decade, delivering benefits to patients in terms of reduced risk, better outcomes, and potentially reducing patient exposure to radiation.
Recent innovations, such as high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU), now facilitate advanced non-invasive or minimally invasive treatment options for various cancers and neurological conditions. Ultrasound and MR guided HIFU therapies are increasingly being used to ablate localised solid tumours such as liver tumours and uterine fibroids.
Barriers to entry
For new therapeutic devices entering the market, gathering substantial clinical evidence, and obtaining reimbursement are the key hurdles to market adoption. The road from concept to clinical use can be fraught with challenges as illustrated by most current market players whose product development and launch plans span from years to decades in the imaging and image guided therapy markets.
With regards to cancer imaging, the ability to visualise very small tumours has driven innovation across all imaging modalities. Dual imaging modalities such as combining MRI or CT imaging with real time Ultrasound imaging are now used to provide superior image guidance.
From diagnosis to treatment
Other device-led advances in cancer therapy, identified by our survey respondents included microbubbles. This technology uses ultrasound to “burst” microbubbles of chemotherapy drugs when they are near their target. Thus, demonstrating how innovations in the use of ultrasound are moving this modality from diagnosis to the treatment room.
Philippa Bevan has over 25 years commercial and public sector experience in marketing, market research and product management spanning the education, laboratory, medical device, technology transfer and packaging industries. Philippa has a BSc (Hons) in Microbiology and Virology and is a Chartered Marketer.