Focused Ultrasound Therapy
Focused ultrasound is an early-stage, noninvasive, therapeutic technology with the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for patients with painful metastatic cancer to the bone. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasound energy precisely and accurately on targets deep in the body without damaging surrounding normal tissue. Where the beams converge, the ultrasound produces precise ablation (thermal destruction of tissue) of the pain-producing nerves around the cancer metastases without surgery, resulting in a significant reduction in pain.
The primary options for treatment of painful bone metastases include radiation and medications. In some cases surgery is considered.
For certain patients, focused ultrasound could provide a noninvasive alternative to conventional therapy with less risk of complications and lower cost.
- It is a non-invasive, low-morbidity treatment that allows for a quick return to normal life (usually the next day).
- A single therapy session can provide rapid and durable resolution of bone metastasis pain.
- Focused ultrasound pain relief does not have the adverse side effects of pain medications
- It does not include radiation.
- If necessary, it can be repeated.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
The following geographical regions have one or more focused ultrasound devices approved to treat painful bone metastases: USA (FDA), Europe (CE Mark), Korea (KFDA), Asia, Canada, Israel, India, Latin America and Russia.
Treatments are reimbursed in Italy and Germany. Most major health insurers in the US also cover focused ultrasound for bone metastases. In other countries, coverage may be available on a case-by-case or site basis.
For a full list of known bone metastases clinical trials, please see here.
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