Abu Dhabi: An artificial intelligence-guided radiotherapy treatment, a targeted therapy for liver cancer, and a chemotherapy robot are some of the innovative options that are transforming cancer care in Abu Dhabi.
They are available at the newly inaugurated Fatima bint Mubarak Centre at the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, a Mubadala Health partner.
The Centre is modelled on Taussig Cancer Centre at the US-based Cleveland Clinic. Taussig is famed as one of the top providers of cancer care in the United States, and the Fatima bint Mubarak Centre is similarly focused for the UAE.
The Centre, which was officially inaugurated in March, spans 19,000 square metres. It has 32 examination rooms, 24 private infusion rooms for administering medications intravenously, two procedure rooms, and a dedicated area for women’s oncology services.
Among the treatment technologies introduced by the Centre to the UAE is the Ethos adaptive radiotherapy, the hospital said. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, Ethos allows the radiotherapy medical team to adapt a patient’s treatment plan in real-time, based on daily changes in the patient’s anatomy.
Previously considered impossible, the AI-aided process significantly reduces the adaptive treatment time, with sessions lasting just 25 to 30 minutes. The technology also reduces exposure to radiation when compared to more traditional treatments. While the machine is suitable for all cancer types, it is currently being primarily used for pelvic, abdominal, bladder and prostate cancers, the hospital statement said.
Liver cancer therapy
The Centre also offers radioembolisation, TARE-Y90 therapy, a minimally invasive targeted therapy that uses radioactive particles to destroy cancer cells in the liver. The procedure involves injecting tiny beads, known as microspheres, into the blood vessels that supply the tumor in the liver with blood. These microspheres emit radiation that targets the tumor cells while sparing healthy liver tissue.
This treatment is particularly useful for patients with liver cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, as it can help shrink tumors that may be otherwise inoperable and alleviate symptoms such as pain and fatigue. Radioembolisation is a safe and effective treatment option for select patients with liver cancer that can offering them an improved quality of life and prolonged survival.
Dr Stephen Grobmyer, Institute Chair of the Oncology Institute at the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, said: “The Fatima bint Mubarak Centre is poised to set new standards of clinical excellence in cancer care, fulfilling another milestone in Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi’s vision and mission to provide compassionate, complex care and being the best place to receive care."
He added: "Our fully equipped, premium facility elevates care for cancer through comprehensive world-class screening, and leading-edge diagnostic and treatment options, all conveniently available under one roof, which build on the existing expertise of the Oncology Institute."
The Fatima bint Mubarak Centre is also home to a chemotherapy robot that leverages an automated compounding process to ensure caregiver and patient safety. The robot prepares patient-specific hazardous doses with ease and accuracy, thus improving patient and operator safety, ensuring pharmacist efficiency, and reduced operating costs. Additionally, it boosts nursing confidence, facilitates automated record-keeping, and streamlines inventory management.
The Centre has additionally introduced other advanced treatment plans that use the latest and technologies, improving the chances of successful outcomes for patients. This includes Edge radiosurgery, another accurate and non-invasive cancer treatment that uses stereotactic radiation to target cancerous cells while sparing healthy ones. Brachytherapy or internal radiation, on the other hand, places radioactive material inside the affected organ, allowing for the application of high local doses of radiation to specific areas of the body, and therefore leading to fewer side effects than external beam radiation.
“Introducing technologies such as these make treatment solutions more accurate and effective and helps in minimising resulting side effects. We will continue to adopt and introduce such innovative approaches that prioritise the highest quality of patient care,” said Dr Fady Geara, department chair for radiation oncology at the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi’s Oncology Institute.