Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed male malignancy, with one in every seven men affected worldwide. Although radiation and surgery are effective to remove the disease, it is typically associated with side effects of incontinence and erectile dysfunction. Focal therapy using high-intensity focused ultrasounds (HIFU) offers a middle-ground treatment for localized prostate cancer using ablation or tissue destruction that preserves the sexual and urinary functions while still treating the disease effectively. Sonablate Corp., a leader in focal therapy for prostate diseases provides patients with the most customizable HIFU treatment to meet individual needs.
Sonablate Corp. manufactures an advanced image-guided Sonablate HIFU device for prostate ablation, the first high-frequency, ultrasound device to be commercialized. Richard Yang, CEO of Sonablate Corp. was with the CEOViews team to share details about how their device is providing patients with the most customizable focal therapy treatment option.
Sonablate Corp.’s mission is to revolutionize the way physicians deliver healthcare to patients worldwide.
How did it all begin
What is now known as Sonablate Corp. started back in the 1990s when a small team, in conjunction with Indiana University School of Medicine, formed what was called Focus Surgery Inc. Some members of this group later spun off to create the patients were treated with HIFU worldwide. Speaking about their journey, Mr. Yang said, “The response from both the urology community and patients has been terrific. The recognition has further elevated our profile amongst hospital administrators and the medical community who continue to evolve their diagnostic and treatment paradigm. Focal therapy using Sonablate HIFU is now being recognized as a company that became the first to commercialize the concept of using ultrasound to image and treat the prostate without any surgical incisions or radiation. By using ultrasound waves to create a focal point of energy, these researchers and scientists demonstrated that they could very precisely destroy tissue in a repeatable manner while leaving healthy tissue untreated. In 2015, Sonablate HIFU became the first focused ultrasound device to be FDA cleared in the United States for the ablation of prostate tissue.
The original mission was to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia, in which the prostate enlarges and impedes the flow of urine out from the bladder. The concept of precise destruction of prostate tissue then started to include treatment of cancerous tumors within the prostate in this minimally invasive outpatient manner. Now, Sonablate Corp.’s mission is to revolutionize the way physicians deliver healthcare to patients worldwide.
Journey of success
With a HIFU laboratory, a handful of patents and a number of government grants, the team developed the capacity to manufacture the first Sonab- late HIFU device for prostate ablation. From then on, iterations of the Sonablate HIFU device were created, clinical trials were executed, and many treatment option that should be offered to patients.”
Sonablate HIFU is the next generation of prostate care
Sonablate HIFU in conjunction with advanced imaging and precision guided biopsy is used to target the patient’s disease. Sonablate HIFU is a technology solution whose soundwave can destroy a target as small as 3mm x 3mm x 10mm. With a robotic ultra-sound probe, Sonablate HIFU is able to destroy a specific tissue with millimetric precision while sparing critical nerves and blood vessels.
Sonablate HIFU is one of the most customizable focal therapy options, offering a minimally invasive, outpatient treatment that preserves a patient’s sexual and urinary function. This has been clinically proven to provide disease control while preserving quality of life – all without a surgical incision or a dose of radiation.
Focal therapy programs
Sonablate Corp. facilitates the building of industry leading focal therapy programs by providing the most clinically proven focal therapy technology and best-in-class physician training programs for the treatment of prostate disease. Together with leading key opinion leaders that use Sonablate HIFU from across the globe, the company has supported and helped organize educational programs that bring together the leaders in imaging, biopsy and focal therapy. Sonablate HIFU users are the most published and referenced with respect to prostate focal therapy and continue to collect and publish clinical outcomes in the top journals.
The HIFU Evaluation and Assessment of Treatment (H.E.A.T) Registry is a globally accessible, web-based platform used for storing clinical data on patients treated with Sonablate HIFU. The registry provides a unique aggregation of data from the global Sonab- late HIFU user community for the purpose of advancing the collective knowledge about the clinical impact of HIFU. The registry is a single platform collection point that expedites the ability of a physician (s) to assess clinical outcomes and has been key in demonstrating Sonablate HIFU efficacy and safety. The registry has facilitated the publication in the top tier peer reviewed medical journals.
Staying at the forefront of industry trends
Utilizing technological advancements and through relationships with expert focal therapists around the world, the team at Sonablate Corp. is committed to stay at the forefront of industry trends. Mr. Yang said, Utilizing technological advancements and through relationships with expert focal therapists around the world, the team at Sonablate Corp. is committed to staying at the forefront of industry trends.
“We take a different approach with our customers by building a mutual trust. Our goal is not to simply sell them a device but rather expand their program to provide one of the best options for the patients by understanding what they currently offer and why. By taking this approach our customers become our best advocates and educators.
Sonablate Corp. regularly holds webinars directed towards the medical community to expand the under- standing on how focal therapy is changing medicine. We also stay at the forefront of industry trends by networking with other technology companies and regularly attending the top industry trade shows where we regularly hold hand-on courses and lecture on the latest clinical data.”
Focused on long-term growth, the team at Sonablate Corp. is in the process of continual evolution to expand their HIFU technologies to balance treatment effectiveness and quality of life. Speaking about their motto, Mr. Yang said, “We want to continue to build relationships with our physicians, provide the best-in-class training, and document the clinical outcomes to expand the access of this great technology to more patients.”