Treatment for glioblastoma (GBM)
Intended for US audiences only.
Optune® Novocure™

How Optune® works

You might be wondering how a device that creates wave-like electric fields can help treat glioblastoma. Here's a look at the science behind Optune.

How GBM cancer cells grow

When cells become cancerous, they undergo changes that cause them to divide quickly and uncontrollably. This creates more and more cancerous cells that form masses, called tumors.

How Tumor Treating Fields interfere

When Optune is turned on, it creates low-intensity electric fields, called Tumor Treating Fields, or TTFields. TTFields help slow or stop glioblastoma cancer cells from dividing and may also cause some of them to die.

How Optune treats where the tumor is

TTFields work when cancer cells are dividing and do not disrupt healthy resting cells. Because TTFields do not enter the bloodstream, like a drug, they have not been shown to affect cells in other parts of the body. The most common (≥10%) adverse events seen when using Optune alone were scalp irritation from device use and headache.

Optune® delivers TTFields to the location of a GBM tumor

Optune delivers TTFields to the location of a GBM tumor.

Drugs, like chemotherapy, travel through the bloodstream, affecting cells all over the body

Drugs, like chemotherapy, travel through the bloodstream, affecting cells all over the body.

How Optune delivers TTFields

Optune uses 4 adhesive patches, called transducer arrays, to deliver therapy. These transducer arrays are applied to your scalp and are connected to the device and battery. The transducer array placement is determined based on each patient's MRI results to help maximize the effect that TTFields have on the tumor.

Learn how Tumor Treating Fields work

Watch how Optune stops cancer cells from dividing

1. National Institutes of Health. National Cancer Institute. What is cancer? http://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/what-is-cancer. Updated February 9, 2015. Accessed November 19, 2015.
2. Optune Instructions For Use. Novocure 2016.
3. Kirson ED, Dbalý V, Tovarys F, et al. Alternating electric fields arrest cell proliferation in animal tumor models and human brain tumors. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007;104(24):10152-10157.
4. MedlinePlus. Chemotherapy. https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002324.htm. Updated May 29, 2014. Accessed November 19, 2015.
5. Optune Patient Information and Operation Manual. Novocure 2016.

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Indications For Use

Optune is intended as a treatment for adult patients (22 years of age or older) with histologically-confirmed glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).

Optune with temozolomide is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with newly diagnosed, supratentorial glioblastoma following maximal debulking surgery and completion of radiation therapy together with concomitant standard of care chemotherapy.

For the treatment of recurrent GBM, Optune is indicated following histologically-or radiologically-confirmed recurrence in the supratentorial region of the brain after receiving chemotherapy. The device is intended to be used as a monotherapy, and is intended as an alternative to standard medical therapy for GBM after surgical and radiation options have been exhausted.

Important Safety Information

Contraindications

Do not use Optune if you have an active implanted medical device, a skull defect (such as, missing bone with no replacement), or bullet fragments. Use of Optune together with implanted electronic devices has not been tested and may theoretically lead to malfunctioning of the implanted device. Use of Optune together with skull defects or bullet fragments has not been tested and may possibly lead to tissue damage or render Optune ineffective.

Do not use Optune if you are known to be sensitive to conductive hydrogels. In this case, skin contact with the gel used with Optune may commonly cause increased redness and itching, and rarely may even lead to severe allergic reactions such as shock and respiratory failure.

Warnings and Precautions

Use Optune only after receiving training from qualified personnel, such as your doctor, a nurse, or other medical personnel who have completed a training course given by Novocure (the device manufacturer).

Do not use Optune if you are pregnant, you think you might be pregnant or are trying to get pregnant. It is not known if Optune is safe or effective in these populations.

The most common (≥10%) adverse events involving Optune in combination with temozolomide were low blood platelet count, nausea, constipation, vomiting, fatigue, scalp irritation from device use, headache, convulsions, and depression.

The most common (≥10%) adverse events seen when using Optune alone were scalp irritation from device use and headache.

The following adverse reactions were considered related to Optune when using the device alone: scalp irritation from device use, headache, malaise, muscle twitching, fall and skin ulcer.

All servicing procedures must be performed by qualified and trained personnel.

Do not use any parts that do not come with the Optune Treatment Kit, or that were not sent to you by the device manufacturer or given to you by your doctor.

Do not wet the device or transducer arrays.

If you have an underlying serious skin condition on the scalp, discuss with your doctor whether this may prevent or temporarily interfere with Optune treatment.


Please click here to see the Optune Instructions For Use (IFU) for complete information regarding the device's indications, contraindications, warnings, and precautions.

Patient Journey videos on this site depict actual patients and caregivers. All other depictions of patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals are actor portrayals.

Indications For Use

Optune is intended as a treatment for adult patients (22 years of age or older) with histologically-confirmed glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).