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Deep inspiration breath-hold (DIBH)

patient undergoingdeep inspiration breath-hold cancer treatment

What is spirometry-monitored deep inspiration breath-hold (DIBH)?

Deep inspiration breath-hold (DIBH) is an effective method of limiting radiation exposure to the heart and lungs. It is particularly useful for treating patients with left-sided breast cancer, as well as those with certain thoracic and abdominal cancers.

As well as pushing the treatment area away from nearby vital organs, DIBH eliminates movement caused by breathing. This means a more precise area can be treated and more radiation can be delivered to tumours in the lungs, liver, pancreas and breast.

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The spirometry-monitored breath-hold equipment used by GenesisCare, allows patients to be in control of their breathing at all times. If for any reason a patient has to cough or can’t hold their breath, they are able to breathe freely and the delivery of radiotherapy is stopped. Treatment is only resumed when the patient feels they are ready.

Patients who are referred for DIBH have their lung capacity and natural breathing cycle measured so that a comfortable breath-hold capacity can be set. During DIBH, the patient uses a mouth-piece, rather like a snorkel and wears a pair of goggles which displays their breathing cycle and shows them when they need to inhale and when to hold their breath.

The deep inspiration breath-hold baseline values are tailored for each individual patient during an initial visit (sometimes called a training or preparation visit). This is set at a level where the patient can comfortably hold their breath for 20 to 30 seconds. At all times, the patient is in control and the 3D imaging and treatment delivery is broken into segments usually lasting 20 to 30 seconds as necessary.

Patients who are unsuitable for DIBH can be assured that by combining other technologies such as intensity modulated radiotherapy and daily image guided radiotherapy they will be provided with the most precisely targeted treatment for their specific situation.

Download the GenesisCare deep inspiration breath-hold brochure here.

If you are interested in learning more about spirometry-monitored deep inspiration breath-hold, take a look at this to learn more about how the treatment work and who is suitable for this technique.

Deep Inspiration Breath Hold Study Infographic

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Deep Inspiration Breath-hold Brochure

Download the GenesisCare deep inspiration breath-hold brochure.


On 8th January 2016, we changed our name to GenesisCare.