Redesigned from the ground up in 2007, the Perfexion® Gamma Knife system is a completely robotic radiosurgical system that takes stereotactic radiosurgery to the next level and provides a radiosurgical platform for further refinement and expansion of procedures in the brain, cervical spine and head & neck regions.

The Perfexion system -- installed at UPMC Presbyterian in the fall of 2007 -- features advanced patient treatment and safety features including a newly remastered, more flexible dose delivery system allowing physicians to administer doses to all targets while the patient is still in the original treatment position. With this technology, physicians can non-invasively treat multiple brain lesions simultaneously -- in one single automated procedure, in one single day.

In 2002, Center for Image-Guided Neurosurgery director L. Dade Lunsford, MD, was asked to serve on an advisory panel of the manufacturer of the gamma knife, Elekta, Inc.

Working with other surgeons, radiation oncologists, physicists, and engineers, Elekta decided to re-design the latest generation gamma knife from the bottom up. The goal was to expand treatment options, improve treatment efficiencies, and to maximize the usage of robotics.

The first new Perfexion unit was placed into service in Marseille, France in the summer of 2007. Dr. Lunsford helped celebrate the installation of this device by providing the inauguration lecture in Marseille in a special ceremony attended by hospital, city, and provincial leaders.

UPMC and Elekta have partnered in the assessment and use of a variety of technologies over the last 25 years, including stereotactic guiding technologies, robotic surgical microscopes, magnetoencephalography, linear accelerator radiation systems, and gamma knife radiosurgery. This partnership has been enormously beneficial to thousands of patients who previously would have to undergo other more invasive surgical procedures or radiation treatment.