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What is OncoSil™?

OncoSil is a single-use brachytherapy device (internal radiation) used to deliver a pre-determined dose of beta-radiation directly into cancerous tissue. This is an innovative molecular therapy used to treat locally advanced unresectable pancreatic cancer.

The London Clinic’s specialists have the most experience in the country and are the leading practitioners in OncoSil delivery. They use an endoscope which is carefully guided into your stomach/duodenum using ultrasound imaging.

A needle is then inserted through the endoscope, into the tumour and once there the OncoSil microparticle suspension is injected. It thereby delivers a high dose of radiation precisely into the cancer to destroy the cells.

The London Clinic has world-leading nuclear medicine and oncology consultants supported by dedicated multidisciplinary teams and some of the most modern treatments available. Our priority is to provide the best cancer care in our award-winning cancer centre.

Cancer treatment can be physically and emotionally demanding. At this difficult time, The London Clinic offers the latest cancer treatments, sensitive support by a multidisciplinary team and a clean, calm environment in which to recover.

Who is OncoSil suitable for?

Patients with pancreatic cancer should consider asking for a referral if

  • their disease is locally advanced and inoperable
  • there is no spread to other parts of the body

What is Locally Advanced Pancreatic Cancer?

The pancreas is a large gland which lies behind the stomach in the upper part of the abdomen. It plays a vital role in digesting food and produces hormones, including insulin, which control the levels of sugar in the blood.

Cancer develops when cells in the pancreas start to divide and grow in an abnormal and uncontrolled way, forming a tumour. They can develop in the head, the body or tail of the pancreas, with different kinds of cancer arising from different cells.

Locally advanced pancreatic cancer is where the cancer has spread into surrounding nearby vessels and/or lymph nodes but has not extended to other organs or areas of the body.

Understanding Your Treatment

OncoSil consists of microparticles suspended in a specially formulated diluent suitable for implantation directly into the tumour. These microparticles contain a radioactive isotope (phosphorus-32). Using ultrasound-guided endoscopy, the microparticles are injected directly into the target tumour.

The microparticles become permanently implanted in the tumour capillaries and deliver the prescribed radiation dose. Phosphorus-32 is a pure beta emitter with a maximum radiation range in tissue of 8.2mm. This means the radiation is delivered locally to the tumour with minimal radiation dose to surrounding organs and vessels.

By stopping cell division and proliferation, the OncoSil device can prevent the cancer cells from multiplying and ultimately shrink the tumour mass as the cancer cells eventually die.

The London Clinic offers OncoSil treatment, planned and administered for you according to your individual needs, by an expert multi-disciplinary delivery team consisting of endoscopists, oncologists, nuclear medicine physicians and specialist nurses.

The team has extensive knowledge and experience of OncoSil and the treatment of pancreatic cancer. We will be able to guide and advise you about the possible side-effects, to help control your symptoms and we will always take time to answer any questions and address any worries you may have.

We also offer complementary therapy, counselling and an extensive physiotherapy service.

After the Implantation of OncoSil - Treatment Facts

Generally, OncoSil implantation at The London Clinic is an outpatient procedure, which takes around 30 - 45 minutes to deliver. However, depending on your doctor’s assessment, you may be required to stay overnight. 

An endoscopist and nuclear medicine physician will carry out the procedure. Very little radiation leaves your body. There may be a small amount of radiation present in your urine and/or faeces, therefore, after implantation a medical physicist will be present to provide you with some important radiation safety practices and advice for the first two weeks, after the OncoSil has been implanted. 

OncoSil is delivered alongside chemotherapy. Your consultant oncologist will customise a programme of therapy to address your cancer.

Treatment Risks and Recovery

There are risks and side effects with any treatment. OncoSil is well tolerated but there may be side effects related to the sedative used with the endoscopy, the implantation procedure, or from the chemotherapy. Please make sure you talk to your doctor or a member of the delivery team if you have any concerns. 

Our experienced care team will offer medication to reduce any symptoms and support your safe recovery.

The London Clinic will give you advice on radiation safety and a contact number, so that you have access to guidance at any time during your treatment. Your consultant will also provide advice on symptoms to look out for, and when to consider the need for urgent assessment.

Why choose The London Clinic?

The London Clinic is dedicated to providing the best, personalised healthcare with over 600 world-renowned consultants available to offer informed health advice and treatment.

Spanning Harley Street and Devonshire Place, The London Clinic is situated in the heart of London’s internationally-known medical district. This central location, together with state-of-the art technologies and facilities that are not widely available in other hospitals, makes The London Clinic the hospital of choice for around 120,000 patients every year.

The London Clinic is an HTA licensed and JACIE accredited cancer centre with an ‘Excellent’ MacMillan Quality Environment Mark and with access to a Level 3 intensive care unit.

Offering affordable and competitive self-pay packages and expert support from Clinical Nurse Specialists and our specialised multidisciplinary team, over 98% of our patients said they would recommend The London Clinic to their friends and families.

Treatment cost

The London Clinic offers affordable, competitive self-pay packages for certain treatments.

Please call +44 (0)20 3613 7502 to speak to our helpful team to find out more and to book an appointment.

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