Charles’s Story

Charles knew just who to turn to when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. His daughter Janice isn’t a surgeon or a urologist, but she is a radiation therapist who works everyday with cancer patients at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

In January 2007, Charles – who with his wife Dorothy, learned that he might have prostate cancer. A routine physical showed that Charles’ prostate specific antigen levels had risen considerably since his last examination. His doctor told him this could be indicative of prostate cancer. A biopsy in May confirmed his worst fears. “I was scared to death,” said Charles.

His family doctor presented several treatment options, including a relatively new procedure with a CyberKnife® Robotic Radiosurgery System, a groundbreaking non-invasive treatment that delivers radiation in high doses over a short period of about one week. “I told the doctor, I know where I can get that done – Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas,” said Charles. The doctor warned that he may face a long wait to see a specialist for evaluation for such a specialized treatment. But, much to the doctor’s surprise – and with a little help from his daughter Janice – Charles had an appointment scheduled for his treatments just a few weeks later.

As fate or luck would have it, Janice was one of a handful of radiation therapists who had trained on the CyberKnife System. Janice had seen radiation oncologists for more than a decade successfully treat tumors with the CyberKnife throughout the body, including the head, spine and lung. And now Baylor Dallas was about to begin providing the CyberKnife System as treatment for prostate cancer.

Janice asked the doctors if her father could be the first patient. “I told them that he needed to come here because I wanted to make sure it was done right,” said Janice. “A lot of people asked how I could treat my father, but I wanted him to come to Baylor because I wanted to be sure it was done right.” she added. “It reinforced the confidence I have in the CyberKnife technology. If I didn’t believe in it completely, I wouldn’t be recommending it to my dad.”

Charles admits he was a little nervous to be the first patient treated for prostate cancer with Baylor’s CyberKnife System. But he took solace in the fact that prostate cancer treatments with the CyberKnife System were being done successfully at other facilities around the country.

One month after receiving a prostate cancer diagnosis – and just a few days before Father’s Day – radiation oncologist Brian Berger, M.D., started treatment on Charles’ cancer. Dr. Berger’s treatment plan consisted of CyberKnife radiosurgery for five consecutive days with each treatment lasting about one hour.

“I had never had radiation, so I didn’t know what to expect,” Charles said. The treatment was amazing. It’s like an X-ray; you feel nothing.” Charles also was pleased that he had no side effects afterward from the CyberKnife treatment. “I had no impotency, no urination problems, no burns, no problems whatsoever,” he stated.

Within days of his treatment, Charles and Dorothy, his wife of 50 years, were back on the road in their RV to spend another summer in Ohio.

As of the creation of this patient profile, Charles found his CyberKnife treatment to be successful.

Share Your Story

Educating others about your experience with the CyberKnife® System can help others who face similar decisions about their own cancer treatment choices.

If you are interested in sharing your story, please fill out the form below and an Accuray representative will contact you.

Please note: Accuray is the manufacturer of the CyberKnife®, TomoTherapy®, and Radixact® Systems. As the manufacturer, we are unable to provide specific medical advice, view medical records, or schedule appointments.
Privacy Disclaimer: To protect your safety, please do not provide your personal or sensitive information, such as your medical history, on our websites. By entering any information on our websites, you understand and agree that such information will be transferred to Accuray Incorporated in the United States. Please read our Privacy Policy.
Important Safety Statement: Most side effects of radiotherapy, including radiotherapy delivered with Accuray systems, are mild and temporary, often involving fatigue, nausea, and skin irritation. Side effects can be severe, however, leading to pain, alterations in normal body functions (for example, urinary or salivary function), deterioration of quality of life, permanent injury and even death. Side effects can occur during or shortly after radiation treatment or in the months and years following radiation. The nature and severity of side effects depend on many factors, including the size and location of the treated tumor, the treatment technique (for example, the radiation dose), the patient’s general medical condition, to name a few. For more details about the side effects of your radiation therapy, and if treatment with an Accuray product is right for you, ask your doctor.