Dr. Satinsky with patient

Dr. Andrew Satinsky works with a patient and MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center’s new Halcyon machine.

MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center’s new cancer treatment center in Clinton is one step closer toward its completion with the addition of a new cancer-fighting technology in the office of radiation oncologist Dr. Andrew Satinsky.

On March 20, Satinsky began using the new Halcyon machine to treat patients. The Halcyon is an image guidance system delivering radiation more easily, more efficiently and with greater comfort, without compromising on quality, according to a release from the hospital. This results in a treatment that is highly effective in far less time.

“This treatment revolutionizes the quality, expediency, comfort and safety of patients treated with radiation in the state of Maryland,” Satinsky said in the release. “This is exciting for us because we’re the first center in the D.C. metro area to have this, and it means we’re on the cutting edge of technology.”

This new technology involves a low energy X-ray that allows soft imaging of the patient to minimize radiation risks while delivering a powerful treatment capable of achieving the demands of each patient’s needs. Another advantage includes new software tools that allow clinical evaluations for quick decision making on the need for clinical changes to the treatment, through adaptive radiation therapy.

The first patient to be treated at MSMHC was U.S. Department of Behavioral Health police officer John Long, who is currently receiving this treatment five days a week for two months.

“The process was simpler than I thought,” Long said in the release. “It takes just 10 to 12 minutes, and they have explained everything to me, really taken the time to explain the process. I came here because my first impression was good and I haven’t been disappointed.”

Already, MSMHC has expanded its cancer treatment services to include a robust Cancer Committee, which meets throughout the year to discuss the latest innovations in cancer patient care. It also has a weekly tumor board meeting where a team of physicians in different disciplines meet to confer on cases. In addition, the hospital’s roster of cancer treatment physicians, which includes Satinsky and breast surgeon Dr. Ekaterina Tsiapali, recently expanded to add hematologist-oncologist Dr. Eric Rubenstein.

“The acquisition of the Halcyon machine is another step toward offering the most state-of-the-art medicine and creating the new cancer treatment center we are building at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center,” MSMHC President Christine Wray said in the release.

This fall, MSMHC plans to open its cancer treatment center. This center will serve as a connector between all disciplines involved in cancer treatment, from the patient to radiation oncologists, nursing, social workers, surgeons, specialists and primary care doctors, allowing the team to tailor care to the individual patient’s needs while collaborating with all care providers, and taking an approach that involves cooperation among everyone who is involved in a patient’s treatment there.

“The key is to let patients stay near home, in their community, not have to struggle to get to a reputable cancer center. We know there are physical limitations associated with a cancer diagnosis and the ideal place to heal is at home under the careful watch of family, friends and community,” Rubenstein said in the release.

For more information about cancer treatment at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center, visit MedStarSouthernMaryland.org/CancerTreatment.