High-intensity focused ultrasound device showcased at AUA Annual Meeting

Sonatherm probe
Sonatherm probe

SonaCare Medical launched their high-intensity focused ultrasound system, Sonatherm, at the American Urological Association (AUA) Annual Meeting (4–8 May 2013, San Diego, USA). The need to add tissue preserving therapies to the prostate cancer treatment continuum was highlighted at the 108th Annual Meeting of the American Urological Association (AUA), in San Diego, USA, according to a press release.

According to SonaCare Medical, the need for image-guided technologies to better identify and localise disease, and for urologists to consider minimally invasive ablative treatments, was addressed in the Opening Session, the W Whitmore Memorial Lecture, and in other sessions throughout the AUA meeting.

“Giving the annual Whitmore Lecture sponsored by the Society of Urologic Oncology, Urs Studer presented an exhaustive review of published results to clearly demonstrate the overutilisation of radical prostatectomy in the treatment of prostate cancer—having an obvious negative impact on those patients whose cancers are not life threatening or who are beyond surgical cure. This theme, fitting into the PSA screening controversy and the newly proposed AUA guidelines, was also in evidence from multiple presentations on imaging, pathologic and genetic predictors of malignant potential.  And, the growing academic interest in focal and minimally invasive alternative therapies for prostate cancer that have lower morbidity and cost,” said Willet F Whitmore III,medical director, Verathon Medical, USA.

SonaCare Medical, according to the press release, showcased the new SmartTarget image registration and fusion software, developed by University College London (UCL) which combines and displays diagnostic information from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with live ultrasound images to enable targeted prostate treatment. SmartTarget has undergone extensive clinical evaluation at UCL, including using Smart Target in conjunction with the Sonablate 500 as part of a UCL clinical trial led by Mark Emberton, professor of interventional oncology and director of the Division of Surgery and Interventional Science at UCL, London, UK. SonaCare recently announced a partnership with UCL Business (UCLB), to integrate SmartTarget into SonaCare Medical’s Sonablate 500 HIFU system as part of a project funded by the Department of Health and Wellcome Trust through the Health Innovation Challenge Fund. The Sonablate 500 is currently approved for use in over 30 countries outside the USA, according to the press release.

Sonatherm HIFU Surgical Ablation System was launched at AUA (according to the release) and is US Food and Drug Administration 510(k) cleared for the laparoscopic or intraoperative ablation of soft tissue.