Dassault Systèmes, the H. HARTMANN Institute and the Institute Rafaël Launch the VORTHEx Project, the World’s First 3D Simulator for Radiotherapy

  • Project to support the well-being of patients undergoing radiotherapy treatment puts virtual reality at the heart of the patient experience
  • An immersive, virtual twin experience of medical equipment, surroundings and operations familiarizes patients with radiotherapy to better prepare them for treatment 
  • Project relies on technical expertise and equipment of Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE Lab

Dassault Systèmes, the H. HARTMANN Institute – the first private radiotherapy center in France and part of ELSAN – and the Rafaël Institute today announced the launch of the VORTHEx project, the world’s first radiotherapy room simulated entirely in 3D.  The projects leverages cutting-edge technologies to support patients during their illness and improve their well-being during treatment by allowing them to experience their treatment virtually before starting it. 

The VORTHEx project’s room is a virtual twin of a new room at the H. HARTMANN Institute of Radiotherapy and Radiosurgery, which is located near the medical offices and treatment rooms of the Franco-British Hospital in Levallois-Perret, France and is equipped with the latest Cyberknife robot from the company Accuray.  3D simulation accurately recreates the technical aspects and procedures of the treatment including the room, the robot arm, the position of the patient, and the conditions and steps of the sessions. The virtual experience, which can be integrated easily into the patient’s treatment plan, is supervised by a member of the H. HARTMANN Institute health care team, who accompanies the patient throughout the experience.

In France alone, there are around 400,000 new cases of cancer per year and, during patient care, 60% of them will undergo radiotherapy. Radiotherapy has made considerable progress in recent years in terms of efficiency and precision, yet a radiotherapy treatment room can often be a distressing place for a patient weakened by the disease; the procedures, medical explanations, and reality of lying on a treatment table can make it difficult for patients to prepare themselves. Supporting them plays a crucial role in their fight against the disease. By familiarizing a patient with the treatment site and equipment, the VORTHEx project aims to improve their comfort, reduce their anxiety and deepen their understanding of the treatment.  

“This experience helps our health care treatment plan. It is a very realistic and interesting addition!  Although the doctor explains the radiotherapy session to us, we can miss a lot of it.  But we understand everything well thanks to the visualization from this virtual experience. Visualization is better than 1,000 words. And knowing what's going to happen is always better than being in a state of uncertainty,” said Christian E., patient.

“This is really an incredible experience. It enables us to dive right in.  It’s ideal, very pleasant, clear, precise, and well done.  It’s reassuring, and that seems important to me when starting treatment.  This experience enables us to understand what we are going to live through,” said Marc N., patient.

“I was apprehensive, but this experience allowed me to take a step back, really prepare myself for the radiotherapy session and be reassured. It complements the appointment by providing us with many more details and answering certain questions that we didn’t necessarily dare to ask,” said Alain A., patient.

The H. HARTMANN Institute has partnered with the Rafaël Institute to provide a holistic approach to global health that combines cutting edge treatments and personalized and coordinated care.  For the VORTHEx project, Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE Lab provided the technological expertise and virtual reality equipment for the immersive experience. The lab used Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXCITE applications and engineering data of real world processes to create the scenario and its function. Digital continuity ensured an accurate virtual twin of both the robot and the treatment area. Clinical tests measuring the effects and performance of this simulation in the patient journey will be carried out on the Medidata clinical trial platform.

“Digital continuity now makes it possible to leverage the virtual twin of medical equipment for new innovative uses as part of the patient journey,” said Frédéric Vacher, director of the 3DEXPERIENCE Lab, Dassault Systèmes. “The impact of this immersive 3D experience, which reproduces the treatment room identically in a virtual world, will be evaluated during clinical tests with a group of patients.”

“Achieving this highly innovative project demonstrates once again that our actions and thinking are resolutely turned toward our patients thanks to the integration of new technologies dedicated to their well-being and the precision and safety of treatments,” said Emile Dinet, Managing Director, H. HARTMANN Institute.

About Dassault Systèmes

Dassault Systèmes is a catalyst for human progress. We provide business and people with collaborative virtual environments to imagine sustainable innovations. By creating virtual twin experiences of the real world with our 3DEXPERIENCE platform and applications, our customers can redefine the creation, production and life-cycle-management processes of their offer and thus have a meaningful impact to make the world more sustainable. The beauty of the Experience Economy is that it is a human-centered economy for the benefit of all – consumers, patients and citizens. Dassault Systèmes brings value to more than 350,000 customers of all sizes, in all industries, in more than 150 countries. For more information, visit https://www.3ds.com