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Cancer Survivor Shares Story of Robotic Radiation

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A strong housing market means Dale Russo, a real estate agent, is busy moving between houses.

“What we’re doing here, is preparing this house for sale,” he explains at one of his listings. “We’ve got ourselves a beautiful colonial in Manlius. This is a four bedroom, two-and-a-half bath.”


What You Need To Know

  • Cyberknife is a robotic radiation treatment for cancer patients
  • Patients can be treated in 5 sessions, traditional radiation can take 30-40
  • In this region, Cyberknife is only offered At Hematology-Oncology Associates of CNY

He takes notes on what needs to be done. He has a passion for this and almost had to slow down two years ago right around Thanksgiving after a visit with his doctor.

“It was a surprise diagnosis. I wasn’t really scheduled for an exam,” Russo said. “I happened to just be talking to a urologist and while I was there, ‘Dale let’s take a look at you’ and the ugly surprise came about. It was a bit of a shock.”

The shock? Prostate Cancer. Since he enjoys his job, he got to work researching treatments.

“The radiation, talked to the doctors,” Russo said. “I would have to come to the sites, the hospital 30 to 40 times for the treatment to be completed. I said, ‘Oh my God, I’m a busy person, I’m still working.'”

That work included even more research. He eventually found an option for radiation that would take a fraction of the time called the Cyberknife.

“With Cyberknife, they have the option to complete their radiation treatment in five sessions,” said Dr. Tracy Alpert, medical director of Radiation Hematology Oncology Associates of Central New York.

Alpert said it is the only place this type of treatment is offered in Central New York.

“Even though it has the word knife, it’s not a surgical treatment,” Alpert said.

So how does it work?

“It can allow us to deliver the radiation from all different planes,” Alpert said. “So, now you have a hundred to two hundred different options that you can treat the patient at and it keeps it more precise, so we get a much sharper fall-off and we can avoid nearby structures in the body and that allows us to give a higher dose more safely.”

“My down time, was pretty much that week of treatment,” Russo said. “I was probably, if I recall, I was still working, but I slowed up obviously during treatment. I was awfully tired. But I recovered. I was back probably at full speed within two to three weeks.”

And that was a year ago. Dale Russo is happy his work of selling homes is also full speed.

https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nys/central-ny/news/2020/10/05/cancer-survivor-shares-story-of-robotic-radiation-

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