Norwalk Hospital expands tattoo-less radiation therapy for all types of cancer

Tattoo-less radiation therapy system at Norwalk Hospital


Individuals can have precise radiation therapy without the permanent reminder of cancer.


Nuvance Health’s Norwalk Hospital has expanded its tattoo-less radiation therapy offering to all types of cancer, including lung cancer, prostate cancer and rectal cancer. In April 2023, Norwalk Hospital was one of the first sites in Connecticut to offer tattoo-less radiation therapy for breast cancer. The innovative system eliminates the need for permanent tattoos to mark treatment areas while maintaining treatment effectiveness.


Radiation oncology uses precisely focused beams of energy to eliminate cancer cells. The main goal is to target cancer cells with radiation and protect as much healthy tissue as possible. Traditionally, permanent tattoos have been used to mark the starting position for daily treatments. The new system uses 3D cameras with sensors to monitor a patient’s position during radiation and ensure the beams accurately target desired areas. The system will stop delivering radiation if it senses any movement.


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“Radiation is extremely precise and even small deviations from the target can be a problem,” explained Dr. Philip Gilbo, chief of radiation oncology at Norwalk Hospital. “We can ensure accuracy using the new system while also enhancing patient experience, not only during treatment but long after, as they will not have a permanent reminder of cancer.”


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Tattoo-less radiation therapy is available for patients at Norwalk Hospital’s Nancy Jones Beard Radiation Oncology Unit at the C. Anthony and Jean Whittingham Cancer Center — an American College of Radiology accredited center.


Learn more about radiation oncology at Norwalk Hospital.