Gamma Knife SA

The gold standard of intracranial radiosurgery technology.

Eurolab brings the gold standard of intracranial radiosurgery technology to Joburg’s Milpark Hospital

South Africa’s first and only Gamma Knife , introduced into Netcare Milpark Hospital through an investment by leading oncology and cancer care company, Eurolab, in 2017, has successfully performed 465 radiosurgery treatments on patients suffering from diseases or abnormalities in and around the brain. 

Gamma Knife SA is a radiosurgery unit and a hub of excellence with a team dedicated to brain work. For patients, the treatment is easier, quicker and has fewer side effects than other older treatments. The Gamma Knife is in fact not a knife and radiosurgery does not involve any incisions. It replaces the surgeon’s scalpel with up to 192 narrow beams of radiation, generated from radioactive cobalt and targeted to pre-determined designated areas in the brain. It is non-invasive and does not harm surrounding healthy tissue.

Installation of the Gamma Knife has placed Gamma Knife SA’s partners – Eurolab and Netcare Milpark Hospital – on the world oncology map as this radiosurgery unit provides patients in South Africa with less surgically invasive treatment at a rate they can afford. Previously, patients had to travel internationally for this specialist radiosurgery. Click here to Visit the Gamma Knife website

Patients from Johannesburg and surrounds, Pretoria, Port Elizabeth and Bloemfontein treated by the Gamma Knife

Patients come mostly from Johannesburg and surrounds but also from Port Elizabeth, Bloemfontein and Pretoria East where special terminals have been installed. In these remote centres, the patient’s medical teams do the planning for the Gamma Knife surgery and the patient then travels to Milpark where the Gamma Knife team conducts the radiosurgery. 

Radiosurgery is being used across the world to control malignant and non-malignant tumours, as well as vascular and functional disorders in the brain. Despite the surgery involving delicate brain tissue, patients are typically in and out of the hospital in a day or two. 

Treatment can also be done in an outpatient setting which means most patients can go home on the same day.

Game changer – non-invasive, does not harm surrounding healthy tissue

This game-changing machine is referred to as the gold standard of intracranial radiosurgery technology because of its perfect precision and good patient outcomes. 

Gamma Knife machines are found in leading hospitals across the world. South Africa has just one machine, and too few people have access to it. But we are working hard to fix this – building understanding amongst medical schemes about the benefits of radiosurgery treatment and talking to the public sector about how their patients can gain access to the Gamma Knife.” – Eurolab Group CEO, Lynne du Toit.

The first Gamma Knife was developed in 1967 by Lars Leksell, a Swedish physician and professor of neurosurgery. Today’s Gamma Knife Icon is based on the original prototype but has benefited from more than 40 years of advancements in engineering, radiation physics, and computer imaging technology.