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Radiation Treatment During Surgery

For some patients, we are able offer single dose radiation during surgery, minimizing the need for post-surgical radiation treatment.
Intraoperative radiation therapy, or IORT, is a radiation treatment used in the operating room during a cancer surgery. IORT allows your cancer specialists to deliver a higher dose of radiation therapy than traditional radiation therapy. It may also reduce the number of treatment visits you’ll need.


Leaders in the Use of Intraoperative Radiation Therapy (IORT)

Montefiore Einstein Comprehensive Cancer Center was the first New York City hospital to offer IORT. And we continue to lead the study of IORT and its impact on cancer treatment and outcomes.

One of our 320-plus clinical trials studied more than 3,000 breast cancer patients from around the world to determine the impact of IORT on outcomes. This study demonstrated that select patients with low-risk tumors who receive IORT immediately following a lumpectomy, a type of breast cancer surgery, do as well as people who receive standard whole-breast radiation therapy. Patients who received IORT also had less skin toxicity and lower recurrence rates compared with people who received whole-breast radiation.

About Radiation Treatment During Surgery 

With IORT, your doctor provides radiation treatment at the same time as your surgery while you are still under anesthesia. After the surgeon removes your tumor, a round applicator is fitted and carefully positioned in the tumor cavity, It delivers low-energy X-rays to treat the breast tissue closest to the tumor, eliminating any lingering cancer cells while sparing the remaining breast tissue from radiation-related side effects. This treatment can also decrease the number of treatment visits that you’ll need.