Gamma Knife stereotactic radiosurgery is increasingly accepted as a powerful tool in neurosurgery. The device emits 201 individual beams of cobalt radiation focused to converge on a target and destroy it. Current indications for Gamma Knife are numerous, and new indications are continuously emerging. The role of a radiosurgery nurse is relatively independent and consequently requires constant planning. The nurse often is the initial contact for the patient and remains the patient liaison from the pretreatment period throughout each follow-up visit. Unfortunately, there are very few training or orientation opportunities to acquaint nurses with the radiosurgery procedural protocol.
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to: Anil Nanda, MD FACS, Department of Neurosurgery, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, 1501 Kings Highway, PO Box 339332, Shreveport, LA 71130–3932. Dr. Nanda is professor and chairman of the department of neurosurgery at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC).
Allyson DeLaune, RN CNRN, is the Gamma Knife nurse coordinator at LSUHSC.
Ajay Jawahar, MD, is an instructor and Gamma Knife computer planning software specialist in the department of neurosurgery at LSUHSC.
© 2002 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses