WESTFIELD – A Noble Hospital breast surgeon’s work with a new device that improves treatment of breast cancers was featured this year at a prestigious international medical conference.
Steven Schonholz, MD, FACS, presented a scientific poster at the 32nd Annual Miami Breast Cancer Conference, in Miami Beach, FL, Feb. 26 to March 1.
Schonholz focused on BioZorb, a novel three dimensional bioabsorbable surgical marker, which helps physicians track the tumor site after lumpectomy surgery to remove cancer and deliver more precise radiation treatment.
Schonholz was the first physician in Massachusetts to use BioZorb as part of his medical practice. He is Director of the Center for Comprehensive Breast Health at Noble Hospital.
BioZorb contains several tiny titanium clips positioned in a 3D pattern inside a bioabsorbable coil. The body eventually resorbs the coil, leaving the titanium clips for long-term visualization of the surgery site.
“This unique device does a better job of helping us protect healthy tissue around the surgical site during radiation therapy,” Schonholz said. “It can also provide our patients with a more satisfying cosmetic result after treatment.”
The work by Schonholz that was recognized at the Miami conference includes an infographic – a detailed drawing with information text. It explains how BioZorb is used in the treatment of breast cancer. Among advantages of the marker that are outlined in the infographic are these:
• It is readily placed by the surgeon and can be easily visualized.
• It helps target the radiation therapy to a smaller target area, which results in less radiation to normal tissues.
• It provides a stable 3D identification of where the tumor was prior to removal, to help with treatment and longer-term follow-up.
Preliminary experience suggests the BioZorb infographic effectively informs patients and clinicians about an advanced tissue marking method and improves communication between the breast surgeon and radiation oncologist, according to the poster.
The multidisciplinary Miami Breast Cancer Conference brings together surgical, medical and radiation oncologists with the aim of fostering awareness of the state-of-the-art treatments in each therapeutic area and encouraging cross team cooperation in the clinic. At the upcoming 32nd Annual Miami Breast Cancer Conference, pioneers of innovative approaches in each of these subspecialties provided insight into the optimal multidisciplinary management of patients with breast cancer and its application to practice.