Page last updated at 09:21 GMT, Friday, 10 October 2008 10:21 UK

New unit for animals with cancer

Dog with cancer
The linear accelerator treats more than 20 animals every week

A new treatment facility that provides therapy for animals with cancer has opened in Cambridgeshire.

The centre at Cambridge University is one of only three in England offering radiotherapy to animals and the only one in Europe to treat larger animals.

The extension to the Cancer Therapy Unit houses a new linear accelerator which replaces a second-hand machine.

A linear accelerator delivers a dose of high-energy x-ray to the region of the patient's tumour.

Prince Michael of Kent opened the new extension to the cancer unit at the Queen's Veterinary School Hospital of the Department of Veterinary Medicine.

The linear accelerator treats more than 20 animals every week by directing radiation created by fast-moving particles at the cancerous tumours.

Radiotherapy is used in cases where, due to the location or extent of the tumour, surgery alone would not be effective in removing the cancer.

As many as one in four dogs and one in eight cats are affected by cancer, and it is the leading cause of death in dogs in the UK.




SEE ALSO
Funds plea for animal cancer unit
06 Mar 08 |  Cambridgeshire

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