MSK's ECHO Software Is Changing Radiation Treatment for Everyone

VIDEO | 03:00

The ECHO treatment plan, developed by the medical physics team at MSK, is revolutionizing the way radiation treatment is delivered to cancer patients. This groundbreaking innovation allows physicians to guarantee pinpoint accuracy through A.I.-powered calculations, effectively killing cancer cells quicker and less intrusively than ever before.

Show transcript

Dr. Deasy (00:08):

Radiotherapy treatment planning works by trying to add up a high dose of radiation in the region where we know there's disease in the body.

Dr. Yamada (00:17):

But the downside is if we give too much radiation to too large of an area where we're actually treating more normal tissue than tumor, then the patients actually have more side effects and it defeats the purpose of treatment.

Dr. Deasy (00:29):

The limitation with radiotherapy treatment up until now is that there was no way to tell that you actually had the best plan. ECHO gives us the best plan.

Dr. Yamada (00:41):

ECHO is a completely different paradigm. It's very high precision, focused radiation treatment.

Dr. Deasy (00:49):

ECHO gives us very precise control about how the radiation conforms to the shape of the tumor and avoids the normal tissues.

Dr. Yamada (00:58):

And so we're able to give more effective therapy with less side effects, which results in better outcomes.

Tim Willis (01:06):

I was first introduced to Dr. Yamada in the fall of 2017 when I was diagnosed with three spinal tumors. Once he gave me the medical assessment, he actually put his hand on my knee and said, "Just so you know, I've got this," which kind of, you know, still gives me shivers today to say that. But six months later, he delivered on his promise. After the treatment planning, we had no evidence of disease in my spine after the radiation treatment that he put together. So I'm unbelievably grateful.

Dr. Deasy (01:43):

The idea of ECHO was to formulate the problem mathematically.

Linda (01:48):

The goal is to produce optimal plan for individual patients through automation.

Masoud (01:54):

So we needed some mathematical model that represents both physics of radiation and also the clinical criteria set by the physician.

Linda (02:04):

At the end, we realized the fundamentals are very simple.

Masoud (02:09):

We created a software that is also seamlessly integrated with our current FDA approved treatment planning system.

Dr. Deasy (02:17):

Patients get a better treatment plan and they get it sooner.

Linda (02:22):

ECHO is a software that improves radiotherapy and improves cancer care.

Dr. Deasy (02:28):

ECHO is also now a platform for further innovation.

Dr. Yamada (02:32):

My hope is that with this type of technology, the quality of care to more people will increase not just within our own country, but also around the world.

Tim Willis (02:42):

It's been so much better than I ever could have envisioned from a quality of life standpoint, from a treatment success standpoint, and just from how I overall feel. I reclaimed my life.