Varian Medical Systems

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Varian Medical Systems Inc.
IndustryMedical Technology
Founded1948; 74 years ago (1948)
HeadquartersPalo Alto, California, U.S.
Key people
Chris Toth, CEO [1]
ProductsMedical Devices
  • Increase US$ 2,919.1 million (2018) [2]
  • Increase US$ 2,619.3 million (2017) [2]
  • Increase US$ 441.6 million (2018) [2]
  • Decrease US$ 300.2  million (2017) [2]
  • Decrease US$ 150.3 million (2018) [2]
  • Decrease US$ 219.2 million (2017) [2]
Total assets
  • Increase US$ 3,252.7 million (2018) [2]
  • Decrease US$ 3,179.4 million (2017) [3]
Total equity
  • Increase US$ 1,588.7 million (2018) [2]
  • Decrease US$ 1,499.3 million (2017) [3]
Number of employees
10,000 [2]
ParentSiemens Healthineers

Varian Medical Systems is an American radiation oncology treatments and software maker based in Palo Alto, California. Their medical devices include linear accelerators (LINACs) and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The company supplies software for managing cancer clinics, radiotherapy centers, and medical oncology practices. Varian Medical Systems employs more than 7,100 people [2] at manufacturing sites in North America, Europe, and China and approximately 70 sites globally.[4]

In August 2020, Siemens Healthineers announced plans to acquire Varian for $16.4 billion.[5][6] The deal was completed on April 15, 2021.[7] After the merger it will continue to operate independently and will retain its headquarters along with its 10,000 employees.[8][9]


Varian was founded in 1948 as Varian Associates by Russell H. Varian, Sigurd F. Varian, William Webster Hansen, and Edward Ginzton to sell the Klystron, the first tube which could generate electromagnetic waves at microwave frequencies, and other electromagnetic equipment.[10][11]

By 1999, Varian Associates had branched into semiconductor, vacuum tube, and medical device fields. On April 2, 1999 these divisions split to become Varian Semiconductor, Varian, Inc. and Varian Medical Systems.[12][13]

In August 2020, Siemens Healthineers AG announced that it plans to acquire Varian Medical Systems in an all-stock deal valued at $16.4 billion.[14][15] The deal was approved and completed on 15 April 2021.[16] After the merger Varian will continue to operate independently and will retain its headquarters along with its 10,000 employees.[8][9]

Acquired companies[edit]

Varian Medical Systems has acquired other companies including Pan-Pacific Enterprises,[17] ACCEL Instruments,[18] Bio-Imaging Research, Inc.[19] Sigma Micro Informatique Conseil,[20] Argus Software,[21] Dosetek Oy,[22] Velocity Medical Solutions.[23] and MeVis Medical Solutions AG.[24]

In January 2018, the company announced the acquisition of Sirtex Medical for $1.3 billion.[25]

In 2019, the company acquired CyberHeart, a privately-held company with intellectual property (IP) that covers the use of radiation in the heart (cardiac radioablation) and other forms of radiosurgery for cardiovascular disease.[26]

Spin-off companies[edit]

Varex Imaging office in Santa Clara

On January 30, 2017, spin-off of Varex Imaging Corporation (manufacturing of X-ray imaging products) from Varian Medical Systems had been successfully completed.[27]


Linear accelerators[edit]

Varian manufactures a range of megavoltage LINACs with varying levels of features and complexity, for example different numbers of multileaf collimators or the ability to perform radiosurgery.[28]

TrueBeam is a radiotherapy system.[29]

The EDGE radiosurgery suite was launched in 2012.[30] The first cancer centers to use the new system were the Champalimaud Foundation in Lisbon, Portugal and Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, Michigan.[31]


In 2017, Varian launched Halcyon. The system features unique dual-layer MLC that enables high modulation with low leakage for every field or arc. Halcyon is advertised to be intuitive, friendly and comfortable for clinical staff and patient alike. This is primarily done by automating several functions typically performed manually by radiographers, such as switching between treatment beams in an automatic fashion. Additionally, Halcyon also features an automated machine performance check for daily LINAC quality assurance, which can speed up the checking of beam constancy and mechanical performance through the use of a phantom.[32]

However, while Halcyon does boast improved automation and workflow improvements which allow for faster patient treatment, these extra automation tasks can make occasionally make it more difficult for medical physicists to perform detailed Quality Assurance on LINAC performance. Nevertheless, automation in both quality assurance and clinical operation generally make the LINAC easier to operate by checkers and radiographers.

Proton Therapy[edit]

Varian manufactures the ProBeam Proton Therapy System, with current and planned installations at several sites globally.[33] These are an all pencil-beam scanning proton therapy system utilizing IMPT (intensity modulated proton therapy), which was developed with PSI of Switzerland.[34] Varian also develops medical software and radiology information system for proton treatment planning system.

Ethos Therapy[edit]

On September 16, 2019, during the 2019 American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual meeting, being held Sept. 15-18 in Chicago, Varian announced Ethos therapy, an artificial intelligence (AI)-driven holistic solution[buzzword] designed to increase the capability, flexibility and efficiency of radiotherapy. This new solution[buzzword] is designed to deliver an entire adaptive treatment in a typical 15-minute timeslot, from patient setup through treatment delivery.


Defamation case law[edit]

In 1999, Varian Medical Systems, Inc. sued a former employee for defamation after they posted numerous messages criticizing the company on the Internet.[35] The lawsuit led to the ruling of Varian v. Delfino by the California Supreme Court on the question of whether a trial could proceed while denial of the defendant's anti-SLAPP motion was under appeal. After the state supreme court ruled that a new trial would be necessary because of that technical concern,[36] the case was settled on undisclosed terms.

University of Pittsburgh[edit]

On April 25, 2012, a US federal judge in Pittsburgh awarded attorney fees, costs, and doubled damages totaling $73.6 million to the University of Pittsburgh after the university won a suit on medical patent infringement grounds against Varian.[37]


  1. ^ "Executive Leadership". Varian. Retrieved 13 December 2021.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Varian Medical Systems Inc 2018 Annual Report Form (10-K)" (XBRL). United States Securities and Exchange Commission. November 26, 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Varian Medical Systems Inc 2017 Annual Report Form (10-K)" (XBRL). United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Nov 27, 2017.
  4. ^ "Varian Medical Systems, Inc. (VAR) Stock Price, News, Quote & History". Yahoo Finance. Retrieved 2021-04-26.
  5. ^ Sachgau, Oliver; Hammond, Ed; Ahmed, Nabila (1 August 2020). "Siemens Arm to Buy Varian in Year's Biggest Health Care Deal". Bloomberg.
  6. ^ Poltz, Jörn; Busvine, Douglas (2 August 2020). "Siemens Healthineers expands into cancer care with $16.4 billion deal for Varian". Reuters.
  7. ^ Whooley, Sean (1 August 2020). "Siemens Healthineers completes Varian acquisition".
  8. ^ a b "Varian to Combine with Siemens Healthineers in $16.4 Billion All-Cash Transaction" (Press release). Varian. 2 August 2020.
  9. ^ a b Rachal, Maria (2 August 2020). "Varian sold to Siemens Healthineers in $16.4B all-cash deal". MedTech Dive.
  10. ^ Caryotakis, George (May 1998). "The klystron: A microwave source of surprising range and endurance" (PDF). Physics of Plasmas. 5 (5): 1590–1598. doi:10.1063/1.872826.
  11. ^ "Varian Medical Systems History". Silicon Valley Historical Association. 2008. Retrieved 26 April 2021.
  12. ^ "Varian Semiconductor Separates From its Parent". Computer Business Review. Tech Monitor. 11 April 1999.
  13. ^ "Varian Associates Completes Reorganization Into Three Independent, Public Companies". Varian. 31 March 1999. Retrieved 26 April 2021.
  14. ^ "Siemens Healthineers AG (SEMHF) announced on Sunday that it plans to acquire U.S. cancer device and software company Varian Medical Systems (VAR) in an all-stock deal valued at $16.4 billion". 2020-08-02. Retrieved 2020-08-03.
  15. ^ Zeberl, Bernd; Stahl, Andre (2 August 2020). "Siemens Healthineers wants to buy Varian for 16.4 billion dollars". dpa International.
  16. ^ Casey, Brian (15 April 2021). "Siemens Healthineers completes Varian acquisition". AuntMinnieEurope.
  17. ^ "Varian acquires Chinese medical equipment distributor". MTB Europe. 16 January 2008.
  18. ^ "Varian to acquire German proton therapy system supplier ACCEL Instruments". MTB Europe. 11 January 2007.
  19. ^ "Varian Medical Systems Completes Acquisition of Bio-Imaging Research". 24 May 2007.
  20. ^ "Varian Medical Systems acquires Sigma Micro Informatique Conseil". MTB Europe. 17 January 2005.
  21. ^ Varian Medical Systems Acquires Argus Software; Argus Software Automates Collection of Quality Control and Test Data for Radiation Equipment. | Company Activities & Management > Company Structures & Ownership from
  22. ^ "Varian in Finland". Varian. Retrieved 2020-06-17.
  23. ^ "Varian Medical Systems Signs Agreement to Acquire Velocity Software Platform for Data-Driven Clinical Decision Making in Cancer Centers" (Press release). Varian. 12 March 2014.
  24. ^ "Varian Medical Systems acquires majority stake in MeVis Medical Solutions". Reuters. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  25. ^ "Biotech M&A explodes with $27.5 billion of January deals". Reuters. 2018-01-31.
  26. ^ "Varian Acquires CyberHeart". PR Newswire. Varian. 9 May 2019.
  27. ^ "Varex Imaging Completes Separation from Varian Medical Systems, Lists on the Nasdaq Stock Market" (Press release). Salt Lake City, Utah: Varex Imaging. 20 January 2017.
  28. ^ "Varian High Energy Linear Accelerator Comparison Chart". Radiology Oncology Systems. Retrieved 4 November 2017.
  29. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions: TrueBeam System | UCLA Radiation Oncology Technology". Retrieved 2018-07-12.
  30. ^ "Varian Medicl Systems Unveils Edge Radiosurgery Suite – A Comprehensive Solution for Non-Invasive Surgical Procedures". Varian. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  31. ^ "Henry Ford 1st in N. America With New Targeted Radiosurgery Technology". Henry Ford Health System. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  32. ^ "Introducing Halcyon: An Innovative Treatment Platform". Varian. 13 August 2017. Retrieved 2018-07-12.
  33. ^ "Varian ProBeam Compact single-room proton therapy system selected by Penn Medicine". MedicalPhysicsWeb. 27 October 2017.
  34. ^ Freeman, Tami (22 April 2011). "Proton therapy: IMPT goes clinical". MedicalPhysicsWeb.
  35. ^ Espe, Erik. "Ex-Varian employees cry 'SLAPP'". Silicon Valley Business Journal. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  36. ^ Varian Medical Systems, Inc. v. Delfino, 25 Cal.Rptr.3d 298 (Cal. 2005).
  37. ^ Lord, Rich (2012-04-25). "Pitt to receive $73.6 million for patent infringements". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2012-07-11.

External links[edit]