New cancer treatment optionSubmitted: 04/04/2014
Story By Dan McKinney

WAUSAU - You can treat cancer many different ways, but a new treatment offered in the Northwoods is having positive results. HDR Brachytherapy is available at Aspirus Regional Cancer Center in Wausau.

It's a type of radiation treatment that cuts down on patient treatment times. It also means fewer visits to the hospital.

"What Brachy means is putting it in contact with in this case with the tumor," says Jeff Masten, Aspirus Chief Physicist. "This is a special technique that's used in gynecological cases in pulmonary or lung cancers sometimes, prostate cancers, and then breast cancer."

Not every type of cancer can be treated with HDR Brachytherapy. The HDR stands for high dose rate. The radiation is so intense doctors can't be in the same room during treatment. Doctors can use the treatment on many different cancers.

"This actually is a robot," says Masten. "We program it so that a runs the source out on a long flexible wire into an applicator which varies depending on the type of cancer we're treating, breast, lung or gynecological or prostate."

Aspirus has been using Brachytherapy since August.

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MADISON - Groups challenging Wisconsin's voter identification law in court don't believe the state's plan for additional education will do enough.

Earlier this month, federal Judge James Peterson approved a Department of Transportation plan to clarify the process for people who lack photo ID to get voting credentials.

That happened after media reports showed Division of Motor Vehicle employees were giving people inaccurate information.

The court-approved plan includes handouts and website clarifications.

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RHINELANDER - We likely won't find out who Rhinelander's next police chief will be until early next year.  But the city is already working to replace Chief Mike Steffes.

Newswatch 12 learned earlier this month Chief Steffes is leaving Rhinelander to take a job with the Department of Justice.

Steffes beat out 34 other candidates to win the chief job in 2007.  Police and Fire Commission President Todd McEldowney expects to see dozens of new applicants this time.

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WAUSAU - This fall Wausau's Woodson Art Museum will bring together artists from all over the world. 

The Birds in Art exhibit gives artists an opportunity to share a piece of themselves with their audience.

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EAGLE RIVER - Many of us already put out the scary decorations and pumpkins for some Halloween spirit. But if you're looking to take it up a notch, dress like a zombie and grab your running shoes this Saturday.

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WISCONSIN - This year marks the third highest bear harvest in state history.

The totals cement Wisconsin's title as the best state in the U.S. for bear harvests with 4,643 registered.

But it wasn't all good news for bear hunters. 

This year also marked the highest number of hunting dog deaths.

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MINOCQUA - The Minocqua Town Board always knew it would need to replace Supervisor Bryan Jennings eventually. But the Board didn't think it happen so soon.

Jennings died September 8, two days after he was struck by lightning while walking his dog.

Town Chairman Mark Hartzheim says the Town is now accepting letters of interest from anyone wanting to fill Jennings's seat.

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MERRILL - The Merrill Fire Department sees the need for more, younger EMTs to get into the business. Like other area departments, it wants to ensure its staff will stay strong for years into the future.

People like Dylan Schielke can help make that happen.

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