We just finished up a week in San Antonio, Texas, at the ASTRO (American Society of Therapeutic Radiation Oncologist) annual meeting. We were surrounded by all of the big device manufacturers like Accuray, Philips, Elekta, Siemens, Varian, Iba, and Hitachi, with their massive show displays towering above us. But our modest, elegantly appointed show booth still seemed to shine brightly. Although not in a prime spot (next to the restroom), we had a really high traffic. Maybe it was the restroom? Or maybe that our sales and marketing group did a great job out in front, prepping for the event. Either way, it was a big success.
Our show team included Rex Harmon and Mark Kidd for Pyrexar Team USA; Dr. Gerhard Sennewald and Martin Wadpohle from Sennewald Medizintechnik out of Germany; Mira Sirotic representing the team at ORB Healthcare. Paul Turner, Chief Technology Officer, was there answering any and all questions hyperthermic, plus Drew Wilkens in Marketing and Mark Falkowski, Pyrexar CEO, who was taking names and making deals. It was an extremely fast-paced show, continually busy with a long list of new potential clients. We also passed around our latest video, “One More Year.” If you have not had a chance to see the video, it is worth a look.
What we learned
We were not surprised that very few booth visitors knew about our product and how it increases outcomes. But after explaining the benefits of heating the cancer tumor, before or after radiation therapy, and sharing the clinical evidence, everyone seemed to be genuinely interested. The pathway to success is to continue sharing the message: Thermal Therapy Works.
The main event at this year's show appeared to be Proton Therapy, whose massive $200 million systems were the technological stars. Proton therapy is the pinpoint distribution of proton particles targeted at a tumor. It offers less damage to healthy tissues as the energy passes through the body than conventional x-ray radiation therapy. When clinicians heard that adding hyperthermia to their program could potentially make their system work better, they were shocked and intrigued. To us, it seemed like a “no brainer.” Adding our system would cost less the one half of one percent (0.005) to the total investment. If it means better results for the patient, why wouldn't every proton therapy system have a deep regional hyperthermia unit in each suite? Expect to see the combination of proton therapy and hyperthermia available soon.
We also want to recognize the team back in Salt Lake City for getting us to the show and supporting the sales efforts. In the middle of a very aggressive product build and ongoing new product development, everyone helped put together the resources we needed for a successful show. It looks like we will be participating in the ASTRO show again next year in Boston. (watch the One More Year video to find out why that location is a bit ironic).
If you missed us at ASTRO, please be sure to visit our booth (#6563) in Chicago at the RSNA, Nov 29th-Dec. 4th.