Category Archives: First Dayton CyberKnife

Computers Helped Save My Life

The CyberKnife can give 300+ beams of controlled radiation to a lung tumor, all while the patient breathes normally.

“I have cancer growing inside of my lungs. I can’t see it. I can’t touch it. But I know that it is there”, shares John, a computer technologist from West Chester.

John states that the doctors have shown him the medical images of his lungs so that he could see his cancer. “Even though I have seen in CT scans and MRI’s, it is still hard to believe. I thought that my increased congestion was due to allergies. I work with computers all day long, but now computers are helping to save my life.”

In addition to the advanced medical images that diagnosed John’s cancer, the treatment that he chose is also possible because of the advances in computer technology. Surgery was not an option for John because it would have damaged the healthy tissue and was close to his heart. He chose to have radiation therapy with Dr. Ed Hughes instead.

“The fact that we can now use advanced computer imaging during John’s treatment to actually see inside his lungs; has been the biggest medical breakthrough in my 35 year career”, explains Hughes. The CyberKnife’s computers actually track the motion of John’s breathing so that it can deliver the radiation with sub-millimeter precision to only the cancerous tissue.

“Knowing that the doctors could see inside my lungs and that the CyberKnife was so precise and so accurate, helped me to relax. I work. I support my wife and 3 kids. I was not only afraid for my life, but afraid to take off work to recover”, says John. He was able to have 3 CyberKnife treatments that lasted about half an hour each. He was able to keep working and was able to keep up with his active family.

It has been 14 months since his CyberKnife treatments and he is now cancer free. (original blog was in July of 2014)

John shares his enthusiasm, “I have always loved computers. They have fascinated me since I was a teenager and now they have saved my life.”

John was just in to visit with us and he is still cancer free thanks to Dr. Hughes and the CyberKnife. If you want help like John, call Dr. Hughes today.


Cancer treatment with the CyberKnife system is so easy for the patient that we would even allow a child to watch. The patient simply lays on a table for 25-60 minutes while the CyberKnife moves around them. They are able to take breaks, sit up or even take a bathroom break if needed. But they do not feel anything. Treatment is painless. They go about their normal day afterwards. Watch and see.

CyberKnife: Beat Prostate Cancer Without Surgery

Only You Know What’s Best For You   

Seems like a simple idea, doesn’t it?  But it may not be so simple when you’re diagnosed with prostate cancer.  A lot of emotions come into play.  And there are so many choices. Your emotions tell you that you’ll be all better once the prostate is cut out of your body.  But it’s just not that easy. 

To the surprise of most men, the chance of recurrence at the site of surgery is an all too common problem.  That’s right.  Up to 20% of men following surgery need radiation because of rising PSA levels.  And it just doesn’t stop there.  After surgery, there may be embarrassing side effects like incontinence – leaking urine when you least expect it. 

The CyberKnife Solution 

With CyberKnife, there is no pain, no cutting.  CyberKnife is done as an outpatient in only 5 visits.  CyberKnife is not surgery at all.  CyberKnife is a highly specialized radiation machine that tracks your cancer continuously.  And it’s the only radiation machine out there that does so. 

What does this mean for you as a prostate cancer patient?  Better prostate cancer control and fewer side effects. 

The Proof Is In the Results 

Dr. Robert Meier of the Swedish Medical Center in Seattle was the lead investigator of the study of 309 men with newly diagnosed prostate cancer treated at 21 community, regional, and academic cancer centers across the United States.  The prostate cancer patients were treated with stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT), like that delivered by CyberKnife. 

The results were impressive:

1).  97% of men were free from prostate cancer progression at 5 years 

2).  Only 4 of 309 men had serious side effects.  And the side effects were usually temporary. 

At the 2016 Meeting of the American Society of Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology, Dr. Meier said “After following patients for more than 5 years, we found that serious side effects from a brief course of SBRT were uncommon and that cancer control rates were very favorable compared to historical data.” 

The First Dayton CyberKnife Difference 

I’m proud to report that prostate cancer control rates were a bit better at First Dayton CyberKnife. 

First Dayton CyberKnife’s Results (January 2012- September 2016):

1). 98.8% of men were free from prostate cancer progression at 5 years. 

2). 0 of 187  men had serious side effects.

First Dayton CyberKnife is the only SBRT machine in Dayton that continuously tracks the movement of your cancer.  It’s easy to understand that a lung cancer moves with your breathing.  But your prostate also moves as well during radiation.  With CyberKnife tracking, your continuous prostate tracking means less scatter radiation to your rectum and bladder.  And that means less side effects for you. 

Here the facts for yourself.  Only you know what’s best for you.  If you have any questions about your prostate cancer, I guarantee that I will see you in 1-3 days.  You be the judge.  Call me, Dr. Edward Hughes, at 855-Dayton 1

CyberKnife: For More than Just Lung and Prostate Cancer

People are shocked to learn that CyberKnife can be used for many cancers, not just lung cancer and prostate cancer.  It’s not surprising.  The TV ads for First Dayton CyberKnife focus on lung cancer and prostate cancer exclusively.

But CyberKnife can treat a whole host of other cancers, anywhere the body, including:

  • brain

    CyberKnife Iris.tif

    The CyberKnife is the only system to track your tumor during treatment. Giving it the most precision of any radiation delivery system in the world.

  • breast
  • kidney
  • liver
  • lung
  • pancreas
  • prostate
  • spine
  • reccurent head and neck

 CyberKnife is breakthrough radiation treatment.  It is the only radiation machine that tracks your cancer in real time, protecting healthy tissue.  With lung cancer treatment, CyberKnife breathes with you, sparing critical structures such as normal lung, heart, spinal cord, and esophagus. 

CyberKnife treatment takes just 3-5 brief visits over 1 week.  There is no cutting, no pain, and far fewer side effects than surgery or radiation at ordinary cancer centers.  Best of all, there is no recovery time.  You can resume your normal activity after each visits. 

CyberKnife is as effective as surgery but with a much better quality of life.  And First Dayton Cancer Care has the most CyberKnife experience of any center in Southwest Ohio. 

Get your life back faster.  I guarantee I’ll see you in 1-3 days of your call.  Dr. Edward Hughes at 855-Dayton 1

Cyber Knife For Early Stage Lung Cancer Doubles Your Survival

In the study of more than 1,600 veterans with early-stage lung cancer, stereotactic radiosurgery, like that delivered by Cyber Knife, more than doubled the chances of surviving compared to conventional radiation.  Importantly, the study was conducted at VA Medical Centers over the past decade. The study was presented at last week’s meeting of the American Society of Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology or ASTRO.

 Dr. Brian Kavanagh, President-Elect of ASTRO, told the  Medscape news organization, “Although we are talking about a treatment that is of an advanced technology that has only been allowed in the last 10 years or so, it is also a smarter, more efficient and more cost effective way to do things.  It involves fewer trips to the treatment center for the patient, fewer side effects, and is generally a lot easier to take.”

Cyber Knife has also been shown to be just as effective as open surgery for patients with early stage lung cancer, but without the hospitalization, the risks of open surgery, and the pain. Cyber Knife is available only at First Dayton Cancer Care in southern Ohio.  And Cyber Knife is the only radiation device that breathes with you, tracking your lung cancer’s movement with every breath. 

If you have any questions about treatment of your early stage lung cancer, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes, at 855-DAYTON1.  I guarantee that I will see you within 1-3 days.

The First Dayton Cyber Knife Difference-Prostate Cancer

Treatment with the Cyber Knife is painless.

Cyber Knife treatment is painless and it only takes 5 treatments that can take less than 1 hour. Men do not even have to undress for the treatment; it is that simple.

First Dayton Cancer Care began treating prostate cancer patients in 2012 with the Cyber Knife Stereotactic Radiation Therapy System. Since that time, we have performed over 2,500  treatments.  Our physicians have over 30 years of experience treating prostate cancer with a wide range of treatment systems. They have seen for themselves the dramatic difference treatment with the Cyber Knife makes a man’s quality of life and survival.

Discover the First Dayton Difference:

  • 98.8% PSA control rate on our very own patients since 2012.
  • Cure Rates are as good as surgery, but without painful cutting and surgical side effects.
  • Better Quality of Life by lowering risk of embarrassing side effects.
  • Cyber Knife is the ONLY real-time motion tracking radiation system, killing the cancer while sparing health tissue and organs.
  • Drive yourself to and from treatment in just 5 visits. No hospital stays.
  • Everyone has front row parking.
  • Continue to work.
  • Visit with our physicians within 1-3 days of your phone call.

If you have any questions about your prostate cancer, call me, Dr. Ed Hughes at 1-855DAYTON1.

Is American Medicine Rigged? The Truth about Lung Cancer

Are American patients being told all of their options?

Are American patients being told all of their options?

The Presidential primary election season has been eye-opening, with outcries by candidates from both parties of a “rigged system”. The “establishment” has recoiled from such talk. But shining the light on “the accepted way” of doing things has made all Americans more aware of the pitfalls of the system.  And asking probing questions is never bad.

It’s taken two lung cancer specialists from “Down Under” at the MacCallum Cancer Center in Australia to shine the light on the lung cancer surgery establishment in America.  In a thoughtful review of the existing studies of stereotactic ablative body radiation therapy (SABR) versus lung surgery, Dr. Siva and Dr. Ball make a compelling case for the use of SABR to treat early stage non-small cell lung cancer patients.  Dr. Siva and Dr. Ball conclude “SABR and surgery had similar estimated overall and disease-free survival.”  Their study was recently published in the prestigious  journal,  The Oncologist 2016; 21:1-6.

The situation is exactly the same as 30 years ago when I started training in radiation oncology at Harvard.  The raging controversy at that time was lumpectomy and radiation therapy versus mastectomy.  Despite study after study showing that lumpectomy and radiation was exactly the same as mastectomy, the vast majority of early stage breast cancer patients still underwent mastectomy.  But it’s always been hard to get surgeons to tell patients about surgical alternatives for early stage cancers, whether it’s breast cancer or lung cancer.

Did you know that only 14 of 50 states in America require that physicians inform early stage breast cancer patients of lumpectomy and radiation as an alternative to mastectomy?  Any wonder that those same states have more women undergoing radiation and lumpectomy than surgery?

Do you know how many states require that doctors tell early stage non-small cell lung cancer patients of using stereotactic ablative body radiation, or SABR for short, to cure early stage lung cancer versus surgery?  Exactly 0! Any wonder that many early stage lung cancer patients have never even heard of stereotactic ablative body radiation (SABR), like that delivered by Cyber Knife?  Or that the information given to them was inaccurate or incomplete?

Dr. Michael Steinberg and colleagues from UCLA looked at 102 early stage non-small cell lung cancer patients treated with stereotactic radiation (SABR)-56% had no prior knowledge of SABR before meeting a radiation oncologist.  Among those 102 patients, 39 patients had prior lung surgery for a previous lung cancer.  And 90% of those patients would rather have had stereotactic ablative body radiation, like that delivered by Cyber Knife, than another lung surgery (Lung Cancer 2015; 90:230-233).

So what’s an early stage lung cancer patient to do?  I have a modest proposal.  Early stage lung cancer patients need to be “difficult patients.” All of us doctors know the type – asking a lot of questions, having many family members present, and coming armed with a lot of facts found on the Internet. Challenging your physician can sometimes be a good thing.

So if you have any questions on your early stage non-small cell lung cancer, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes at 855-DAYTON1



Over 8,000 breast cancer researchers and clinicians attended the San Antonio Breast Cancer

Know the results of these 5 research studies to help make treatment decisions.

Know the results of these 5 research studies to help make treatment decisions.

Symposium meeting in December 2015.  Here are some of the key highlights that I though would be important to our breast cancer patients.

1. Lumpectomy and Radiation Therapy Is Better Than Mastectomy

In a 10 year study of 37,000 women in the Netherlands, the relative risk of death was 20% lower in women who underwent lumpectomy and radiation therapy versus mastectomy alone.  The 10 year overall survival was 76.8% with lumpectomy and radiation therapy versus only 59.7% with mastectomy alone.  Importantly, the overall survival benefits held even for women who had lymph node positive disease.

  1.  With Lumpectomy and Radiation Therapy, It’s a Good Idea to Stop Smoking

Over 40,000 women were studied by the Early Breast Cancer Trialists’ Collaborative Group.  The results were clear cut-those women who underwent lumpectomy and radiation therapy but continued to smoke were at increased risk for lung cancer and heart disease.

The study was somewhat dated as the median time to entry into the study was 1983. And breast radiation therapy has improved dramatically over 30 years.  But I believe these results still ring true.

3. Skipping Chemotherapy Altogether in Postmenopausal Women with Breast Cancer

Post-menopausal women with the so-called luminal A subtype breast cancer can consider skipping chemotherapy altogether and still expect a good prognosis even when node positive (ER/PR positive, HER-2 negative). Analysis of the “old” Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group 77B Trial finally confirmed what many clinicians already thought: Patients with low risk breast cancer do not need chemotherapy.

4. Heart Medications Protect against Herceptin Damage

In the MANICORE  study, women taking both the beta-blocker bisoprolol (Concor) and the ACE inhibitor perindopril(Converyl, Aceon) preserved heart function.  The study may be a life saver for many of those breast cancer patients who take Herceptin for months. Herceptin is known to cause heart damage.

5. Preventing Breast Cancer Recurrence In Women with DCIS: Anastrozole May Be Just As Good As Tamoxifen

The IBIS DCIS Trial and the NRG/Oncology/ NSABP-35 trial showed that the drugs are equally effective. Anastrozole is my choice because of its fewer side effects.

Be sure that you consider these 5 facts when you are making decisions about the treatment plan that is best for you. The goal should be do treat your breast cancer without causing further health issues.

If you have any questions about your breast cancer treatment, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes, at 855-DAYTON1

September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

Learn the symptoms of prostate cancer and what types of treatments are available from Dr. Ed Hughes. Share this with all the men in your life.


It is Reds Opening Day. Not all Baseball Traditions are Good.

Baseball’s Long SmokelessTobacco Tradition

Baseball and tobacco traditionally go hand and hand. With the start of baseball season, the debate is renewed. Last year’s passing of  legend Tony Gwynn renewed the debate about smokeless tobacco and its use by baseball players of all ages.

Smokeless tobacco is referred to as dip, snuff or chew and has been banned in dugouts in high school, college, and professional minor league baseball. However, while Major League Baseball (MLB) recognizes the harmful effects, it is not banned. New commissioner Rob Manfred and Tony Thurmond, a state assembly member in California, are both actively advocating for a culture change by asking the MLB Players Union for a ban. In 2011, with the urging from public groups such as the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the MLB opened a Tobacco Cessation Center that offers educational sessions to their players and staff about the dangers. They are hoping to break this long standing tradition associated with baseball.

Dr. Donald Marger, Oral, Head and Neck Cancer expert at First Dayton CyberKnife, explains that “the cancer causing chemicals in smokeless tobacco is no different than what is in cigarettes and pipes. While they will not contribute to your risk for lung cancer, there is still danger of cancers of the tongue, floor of mouth, throat, gums, cheeks and lips.” Oral, head and neck cancer affects 55,070 newly diagnosed Americans each year with approximately 12,000 deaths. Other health issues include severe dental problems and the terrible staining of the teeth.

Many MLB players and coaches claim to only use dip while in uniform. They say it is simply a habit and a way to relax and pass the time during a game. David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox only puts snuff in his mouth while he is at bat. Others admit it is a terrible addiction that they simply cannot break and they wish they had never started.

“Cancer of the oral cavity, besides being potentially fatal, almost invariably results in marked physical deformity, swallowing problems, difficulty with speech and breathing. The primary treatment is radical surgery followed by radiation therapy”, explains Dr. Marger.

The debate is not whether dip is harmful ‑‑ clearly it is. The debate is whether or not we want our children looking up to their baseball all-stars and emulating their behavior. At the thousands of baseball fields around our country you see t-ballers chewing bubble gum, high schoolers spitting seeds and professionals spitting tobacco. Would it have made a difference to Tony Gwynn or the many other baseball players with these cancers if someone had told them to never start? Does it need to remain a part of America’s most beloved sport?

April is Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness month. Our local Support for People with Oral and Head and Neck Cancer  will be offering screenings around Dayton the month of April. You will find Dr. Ed Hughes doing FREE screenings on April 18 at the Levin Family Foundation Celebrating Life Health Fair at Sinclair Community College.

Blog contributed by: Kathy Corbett of First Dayton CyberKnife