News Department

Morristown Medical Center only hospital in New Jersey to offer AlignRT heart-protecting and tattoo-free breast radiation therapy

MORRISTOWN, NJ (Morris County) – Atlantic Health System’s Morristown Medical Center is the only hospital in New Jersey to offer AlignRT® heart-protecting and tattoo-free breast radiation treatment.

The new technology protects the heart when radiating the left breast and eliminates the need for permanent tattoos that help guide the radiation therapist in positioning a patient for treatment.

Morristown Medical Center was recently ranked by Castle Connolly as the top hospital in the state with more than 350 beds, and the #1 ranked hospital in New Jersey for breast cancer treatment.  The Castle Connolly results are based on votes of more than one thousand physicians and reflect Atlantic Health System’s strong reputation among physicians across the state. Morristown Medical Center is also ranked #1 in the state by U.S. News & World Report and has been recognized as one of “America’s 50 Best Hospitals” by Healthgrades®.

“We have long been at the forefront of breast cancer treatment, with the same capabilities as many of the world’s leading academic medical centers,” said Mona Karim, MD, vice chair, radiation oncology, Morristown Medical Center. “Our patients can rest assured that we have the best cancer treatment team, and the most forward-looking therapeutic modalities.  AlignRT provides the latest example of the evidence-based, patient-centered technologies we are able to offer breast cancer patients at a time when they need assurance that they are receiving the best care available. This new precision technology enhances both patient care and comfort.”

AlignRT uses 3D camera units to monitor a patient’s skin surface in real-time and compare it to the ideal position with no loss in accuracy when compared to tattoos and marks. This technique is called Surface Guided Radiation Therapy (SGRT) and it ensures that radiation is delivered only when a patient is correctly positioned, enhancing their safety and comfort. “I am fortunate my cancer was detected early,” said Colleen, a patient at Morristown’s Carol G. Simon Cancer Center.  “But I have a pacemaker and I needed radiation to the left breast and that concerned me.”

Radiation can be a highly effective treatment for breast cancer, but the left breast is very close to the heart. This leaves the heart vulnerable to radiation exposure, which has been shown to sometimes lead to cardiac complications.  Atlantic Health System radiation oncologists use a technique called Deep Inspiration Breath Hold (DIBH) to move the heart away from the breast during therapy. With the addition of AlignRT, breast cancer patients now have additional assurance that their hearts are protected.

“Dr. Karim assured me that she could safely provide radiation treatment while protecting my heart and pacemaker using the Align RT system and DIBH,” said Colleen.  “The treatments were easy and painless.”

Atlantic Health System’s Hackettstown Medical Center also offers AlignRT tattoo-free breast radiation and will offer DIBH by the end of the year.

“At Morristown Medical Center and throughout Atlantic Health System, our priority is providing the highest quality breast care services in a safe and caring environment,” added Dr. Karim.  “We have implemented vigorous health and safety standards to ensure the care you receive is evolving for today’s needs.”

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

Related Articles

Back to top button