Gamma Knife Saving Lives

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Michele Ughetto was diagnosed with an arteriovenous malformation in May 2003. Doctors told Ughetto the disorder could lead to fatal hemorrhaging.

Michele Ughet to says, "When I got the diagnosis it put me into a little bit of a panic. I was worried I was going to have a bleed."

Seeking an alternative to brain surgery, Ughetto's doctors at Archbold introduced her to gamma knife, a procedure she underwent in June 2003.

"Within two years, my AVM has been completely obliterated so I no longer have to worry about it."

Like plotting points on a map, doctors set targets on the tumor or growth via computer and tell the gamma knife and its 201 beams of radiation where to attack.

Dr. Steve Johnson, a radiation oncologist at Archbold, says, "Each little beam in itself is undamaging. It's detectable, but very small amount, but when you cross 200 beams you're multiplying that by two hundred so it has an amplifying effect and you get a huge effect at the center."

Doctors say no post-op or anesthesia are just a few of the many advantages gamma knife has over the real knife, and with low risk and proven safety.

Michele Ughetto says, "It saved my life."

The gamma knife continues to produce great success stories. Archbold Hospital has had the gamma knife for about two years, and in that time has treated more than 200 patients.