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Louisville CyberKnife

529 S Jackson St,
Louisville, KY 40202
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Phone: 502-540-1546
Fax: 502-561-7455

Mon - Fri 7:00 am - 4:30 pm

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Louisville CyberKnife is a department of UofL Health - Brown Cancer Center.

Frequently Asked Questions

We’re here to help you find the answers you need


General Questions

Where can I find a facility that offers the CyberKnife® system in Louisville?
The CyberKnife system is only available in Louisville at the Brown Cancer Center.
What area of Kentucky does Louisville CyberKnife serve?
While we're located in Louisville, Kentucky, the CyberKnife treatment can be a viable option for patients throughout the state.

The benefits of fewer treatment sessions (often 1-5) with the CyberKnife make travel more manageable. We understand that traveling for treatment can be challenging. That's why we've included a distance map to help you estimate travel time to our facility.
How do I schedule a consultation?
Please complete the webform on this page, and our team will be in touch to answer your questions and discuss the next steps.
How do I get to the Louisville CyberKnife Center?
Louisville CyberKnife is located on the Lower Level of the Brown Cancer Center in downtown Louisville. The Brown Cancer Center (BCC) is located in the University of Louisville’s Health Sciences Center. It is easily accessible from I-64, I-65 and I-71.

Validated (free) parking is available for patients either in the center’s parking lot or the nearby University Hospital garage. The BCC parking lot is located on the corner of Jackson and Muhammad Ali Boulevard. The entrance to the lot is on the right-hand side of Jackson, just past the BCC. The University Hospital garage is located across the street from the BCC, and patients should enter this lot from Muhammad Ali Boulevard.

Once parked, Louisville CyberKnife patients should enter the BCC using the front entrance. Elevators are located just inside the entrance to your right. Take the elevator down to the Lower Level.

You will exit the elevator into the waiting room and front desk area of the BCC and Louisville CyberKnife. We have also provided a campus map to help our patients.
Is the CyberKnife treatment covered by insurance?
Coverage for the CyberKnife treatment may vary depending on your insurance plan and the specific medical condition being treated. It is recommended to consult with your insurance provider to determine coverage and any potential out-of-pocket costs.

The CyberKnife system

What is the CyberKnife system?
The CyberKnife system is a non-invasive, robotic radiosurgery system used to treat tumors and other medical conditions with precision and accuracy. It utilizes advanced image-guided technology and robotic arm movements to destroy targeted cells with exceptional accuracy while minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissue.
How does it work?
The CyberKnife operates by directing a series of high-dose radiation beams from different angles outside the body. These beams are carefully programmed to come together precisely at the site of the tumor and are tracked in real-time. While each individual beam is designed to be safe for healthy tissue, their combined strength at the tumor location is powerful enough to destroy the cancerous cells while minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissues.
What conditions can be treated with the CyberKnife system?
The CyberKnife can treat a wide range of conditions, including but not limited to:
  • Cancerous tumors (such as those in the brain, spine, lung, liver, pancreas, prostate, and kidney)
  • Benign tumors
  • Arteriovenous malformations (AVMs)
  • Trigeminal neuralgia
  • Movement disorders (such as essential tremor)
  • Recurrent tumors after previous radiation treatment
This technology is particularly beneficial for treating tumors near complex organs or with irregular shapes as its robotic precision ensures that the surrounding healthy tissues and vital organs are spared from radiation.
Is the CyberKnife system appropriate for all patients?
While the CyberKnife system can be utilized for a wide range of patients, it is particularly beneficial for individuals with tumors or lesions that are challenging to access through conventional surgical methods. Moreover, it is a suitable alternative for patients who may not be eligible for surgery due to factors like their overall health status or the tumor's specific location.
What are some of the advanced features of the CyberKnife system?
The CyberKnife system stands out from other systems due to several unique features:
  • Robotic Precision: The CyberKnife system employs a robotic arm that can move with great freedom, enabling precise radiation delivery from virtually any direction.
  • Real-Time Tracking: It uses real-time imaging to continuously monitor the patient's position and adjust the radiation beam accordingly, ensuring accuracy even if the patient moves during treatment.
  • Intelligent Tumor Tracking: The system's advanced software can track and adjust the radiation beam in response to the tumor's motion, such as breathing or other organ movements.
What are some key advantages for patients offered by the CyberKnife system?
Patients can benefit from several key factors associated with the CyberKnife system, including:
  • No surgery
  • No hospital stay
  • No pain
  • No rehabilitation
  • No risk of bleeding or infection
  • No head frame
  • Minimal to no side effects
  • Quick return to normal everyday life
  • Shorter treatment program compared to conventional radiotherapy

CyberKnife Treatment

What is the typical duration of a CyberKnife treatment session?
The length of a CyberKnife treatment session can vary depending on factors such as the size and complexity of the targeted area. On average, sessions can range from approximately 30 minutes to an hour. It's important to note that the entire treatment course may span one to five sessions, typically spread out over several days or weeks.
Does the CyberKnife procedure cause any pain?
The CyberKnife procedure is typically painless as it is a non-invasive treatment method that does not involve incisions or invasive procedures. While patients may experience some discomfort from maintaining a still position during the treatment session, anesthesia is not necessary.
Are there any side effects with CyberKnife treatment?
Generally, CyberKnife treatment is gentle and well-tolerated, with minimal side effects. However, it's possible for some patients to experience temporary effects such as fatigue, skin irritation, or mild nausea. These side effects are typically short-lived and tend to resolve on their own.
What is the level of effectiveness associated with CyberKnife treatment?
CyberKnife treatment has demonstrated impressive tumor control rates and comparable survival rates to alternative treatment methods. However, the effectiveness of the treatment depends on the unique circumstances of each case and the specific condition being addressed. To accurately evaluate your individual situation, we recommend scheduling a consultation with us.
How does the tumor react after CyberKnife treatment?
During radiosurgery, such as with the CyberKnife system, the tumor is effectively eradicated by precisely delivering high-dose radiation to the targeted area. This radiation works by damaging the DNA within the tumor cells, thereby inhibiting their ability to divide and proliferate. As time progresses, the affected cells gradually lose their capability to survive and reproduce, ultimately resulting in the destruction of the tumor.

It's important to note that certain tumors may exhibit signs of recurrence or progression. Thus, regular follow-up appointments are crucial to assess the tumor's status and make informed decisions regarding further treatment or management.

Radiation Therapy

What sets the CyberKnife radiotherapy apart from traditional radiotherapy methods?
The CyberKnife radiotherapy differs from traditional radiotherapy in several key ways:
  • Pinpoint Accuracy: The CyberKnife uses real-time imaging and tracking to continuously adjust the radiation delivery, ensuring precise targeting of the tumor throughout the treatment.
  • Minimized Radiation Exposure: The system's advanced targeting capabilities minimize radiation exposure to healthy tissues surrounding the tumor, reducing the risk of complications.
  • Non-Invasive: Unlike traditional surgery, the CyberKnife is a non-invasive treatment that does not require incisions. It delivers radiation externally.
  • Frameless: The CyberKnife utilizes advanced image-guidance technology, eliminating the need for rigid immobilization frames that are used in traditional radiosurgery.
  • Fewer Treatment Sessions: The CyberKnife typically requires fewer treatment sessions than traditional radiotherapy, often completing treatment in just a few sessions instead of weeks.
Who determines if I am a good candidate for radiotherapy?
As a patient, the decision regarding the suitability of radiosurgery as a treatment option is made by a team of qualified medical professionals. They evaluate your unique case, considering factors such as the nature of your condition, the location of the tumor, and your overall health. Based on their assessment, they provide an expert recommendation, guiding you towards the most appropriate course of treatment.
What type of radiotherapy does the CyberKnife use?
The CyberKnife system utilizes a type of radiotherapy known as stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) or stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). The CyberKnife system is specifically designed to deliver highly precise and targeted radiation to tumors in various parts of the body, including the brain and other areas outside the brain. It employs advanced imaging and robotic technology to track and continuously adjust the radiation beams in real-time, ensuring accurate and effective treatment delivery. The CyberKnife system is a non-invasive alternative to traditional surgery for certain tumors and allows for the delivery of high doses of radiation with enhanced precision and fewer treatment sessions.
How does stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT) differ from conventional radiation therapy?
Stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT) differs from conventional radiation therapy by utilizing multiple beams that converge precisely at the tumor site from various angles. This targeted approach allows for a higher dose of radiation to be delivered to the tumor while minimizing exposure to healthy tissues. As a result, SRT reduces the risk of side effects. Additionally, SRT typically requires fewer treatment sessions than conventional radiation therapy, making it a more time-efficient option.
What is the difference between Stereotactic Radiotherapy (SRT), Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) and Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS)?
Stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT), stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT), and stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) are all forms of precise and targeted radiation therapy.

Here are the key differences between them:

Stereotactic Radiotherapy (SRT): SRT refers to the broader category of treatments that use precise imaging and targeting techniques to deliver radiation to tumors with high accuracy. It can be used to treat tumors in various locations throughout the body, including the brain.

Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT): SBRT is a specific type of SRT that focuses on treating tumors in the body outside of the brain. It delivers a highly concentrated dose of radiation to the tumor while minimizing exposure to nearby healthy tissues. SBRT is typically administered in a few treatment sessions, usually between 1 and 8.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS): SRS is a form of SRT that specifically targets tumors in the brain. Unlike traditional surgery, SRS does not involve making an incision. Instead, it uses multiple beams of radiation to precisely target the tumor while sparing surrounding healthy brain tissue. SRS is typically delivered in a single session, although in some cases, multiple SRS treatments may be needed.

In summary, SRT is the broader category that encompasses both SBRT and SRS. SBRT focuses on treating tumors in the body, while SRS specifically targets brain tumors. Both SBRT and SRS employ precise targeting to deliver a concentrated dose of radiation while minimizing damage to healthy tissues.

Louisville CyberKnife is a Veterans Community Care program provider

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