General questions about the Optune therapy
WHERE CAN I GET OPTUNE?
There are many certified treatment centers in Europe. You could also contact your attending physician, who can approach us at any time with questions about the availability of the therapy.
IS OPTUNE SUITABLE FOR ME?
Optune is potentially suitable for you if you are over 18 and suffering from a newly-diagnosed or recurrent glioblastoma. Please discuss your individual case with your doctor. There are several treatment centers that can prescribe Optune therapy in Europe. Please refer to the user manual for a complete list of contraindications, possible side effects and safety information.
DO I HAVE TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL FOR OPTUNE THERAPY?
No. Optune is an outpatient therapy. As a rule, you will be trained on how to use Optune the-rapy at home, and how the treatment starts will be explained to you at leisure. You can involve your caregivers in this training.
WILL I REMAIN UNDER THE CARE OF MY HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS?
Your attending physician will perform regular examinations, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, to find out whether your tumor is responding to Optune therapy. If your attending physician is not certified to prescribe Optune, it is possible that your treatment will be coordinated at another center. Novocure can certify interested doctors, meaning that you will not usually need a different contact person.
CAN I USE THE SYSTEM IF I AM PREGNANT?
Optune has not yet been tested on pregnant women. Optune must not be used if you are pregnant, suspect you may be pregnant, or if you want to fall pregnant. The effects and side effects of Optune during pregnancy remain unknown. For more information, please consult your doctor and refer to our user manual.
HOW LONG MUST I WEAR OPTUNE?
When you start treatment with Optune, your doctors will talk to you about how long Optune therapy will be administered for. Where possible, Optune should be worn continuously to ensure the best response to the therapy.
IS IT NORMAL FOR MY HEAD TO FEEL WARM WHEN OPTUNE IS SWITCHED ON?
You may feel warm while you are using Optune. Most patients quickly get used to this. If you are unsure about anything, or notice changes in the state of your health, please contact your doctor immediately. You should also do this for all other treatments. Safety information can be found in the user manual.
CAN I USE MY OWN CARRYING BAG?
Optune has a ventilation system to prevent the device from overheating. The carrying case or backpack that were delivered to you and the device carrying case were all specially designed to provide ventilation that works effectively. We recommend that you use the bags that were delivered to you.
CAN I USE MY CELLPHONE WHEN I AM USING OPTUNE?
Yes. Optune was designed and tested to ensure no interference with other electronic devices according to international standards.
CAN I USE OPTUNE IN THE SUN?
Yes. However, please protect your scalp from the sunlight.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF THE TRANSDUCER ARRAYS GET WET?
If the transducer arrays get wet, it is possible that the adhesive patches will detach, meaning that contact with the scalp is no longer guaranteed. In this case, an alarm will sound and the device will switch off. The transducer arrays should be changed every time they get wet or detach. To stop the transducer arrays from getting wet, cover them with a shower cap before taking a shower or a bath. When it rains, use an umbrella if possible, or put on a hat.
HOW DO I KNOW WHEN IT IS TIME TO CHANGE THE TRANSDUCER ARRAYS?
The transducer arrays should be changed every 3 to 4 days. The frequency depends on how much you sweat, or on how quickly your hair regrows. As your hair regrows, the contact between the transducer rays and your scalp is reduced. A frequent alarm sound may indicate that a change is required under certain circumstances.
DO I NEED TO REMOVE THE TRANSDUCER ARRAYS IF I HAVE AN X-RAY, CT SCAN OR MRI?
Yes. Switch Optune off and remove the transducer arrays before undergoing an X-ray, CT scan or MRI. Attach new transducer arrays and continue your Optune therapy afterwards
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF OPTUNE COMPONENTS BECOME DAMAGED?
If the device, or parts of the device, become damaged, call your personal device support specialist. All maintenance procedures must be conducted by trained and qualified Novocure employees.
Out and about
CAN I BE ACTIVE DURING MY OPTUNE TREATMENT?
Before traveling or undertaking physical activities, please ask your doctor to make sure that this does not pose risk to your safety. There are no special restrictions on physical activities associa-ted with using Optune.
CAN OPTUNE BE USED IN THE CAR?
Yes, Optune is wearable and battery-operated. However, it cannot be operated using the cigarette lighter socket in a vehicle. If you will be away from home for longer than two hours, take spare batteries or the power supply with you in case the battery runs out. Your therapy may be interrupted if you do not take a spare battery or the power supply, which may reduce the effectiveness of your Optune therapy. If you have any questions about your ability to drive, please ask your attending physicians.
CAN I TRAVEL WITH OPTUNE?
Yes. Please note that Optune (including the transducer arrays) may trigger an alarm during airport security checks, and that there are restrictions on transporting lithium-ion batteries. Novocure customer service department will be happy to liaise with the airline to make your journey easier. Please contact us well in advance to arrange all the necessary preparations and formalities.