Medical Breakthrough: KU Hospital Marks First CyberKnife Treatment in Sub-Saharan Africa

September 28, 2023

Kenya’s Kenyatta University Teaching Referral and Research Hospital (KUTRRH) has successfully conducted the first CyberKnife radiotherapy treatment for cancer patients in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The Level Six medical facility shared news of this groundbreaking achievement on September 27, with an announcement made by KUTRRH Chairperson Prof. Olive Mugenda.

Prof. Mugenda said the process leading to the commissioning of the machine represents a significant milestone for both the hospital and Kenya as a whole.

The successful completion of the first treatment procedure using the CyberKnife system, which was launched by President William Ruto in May, places Kenya as the pioneering nation in the region to provide fully robotic stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) treatments.

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“Through KUTRRH, Kenya became the first country in sub-Sahara Africa to acquire the CyberKnife, making it possible for local patients to obtain access to the extremely precise stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) treatments the system delivers,” Prof Mugenda said in a statement.

The process, which is applicable for a range of conditions including cancerous and non-cancerous tumors, provides precise and efficient radiotherapy treatment, with the added benefit of reducing side effects and enhancing the overall patient experience.

Prof Mugenda added: “The commissioning of the CyberKnife system today is a major milestone for oncology management in Kenya. As part of the strategic plan, for the last few years, we have harbored the need to move into high-precision treatment. KUTRRH finally managed to acquire the machine, which is a bold but best decision for Kenya in efforts to decrease outbound medical tourism and increase inbound medical tourism.”

The intricate procedure was carried out by a team of medical specialists, including Abdil Jabbari (Application Specialist and Medical Physicist), Ruth Wambui (Radiation Therapist), Peter Loreh (Medical Physicist), Dr. Tracy Irura, and Dr. Shridhar (both Radiation Oncologists).

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