Deep inspiration breath hold (DIBH) is a specialized radiation therapy technique where patients take a deep breath to a precise level and hold this breath while the radiation is delivered. This helps to deliver radiation therapy very precisely to tumors that are near organs that move with breathing, i.e breast, lung, liver, and pancreas.
DIBH is most commonly used for treatment of women with left-sided breast cancer. By taking a deep breath in, your lungs fill with air and your heart narrows and will move down and away from your chest. This has been proven to significantly lower the radiation dose to the heart, making the treatment safer.
For patients with tumors in the lung, liver, or pancreas, DIBH can help to minimize the motion of the tumor. This allows for better targeting of the tumor while protecting the normal healthy organs.
The radiation therapy team will coach you to hold your breath for up to 20 seconds at a time. The radiation beam will only turn on when you have taken a deep breath in. You will do this several times during each radiation treatment.
We are proud to offer this treatment at several locations.