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RTS5020 - Radiation therapy planning and treatment 3

6 points, SCA Band 0 (NATIONAL PRIORITY), 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Leader(s): Ms Caroline Wright


Clayton Summer semester A 2009 (Off-campus)


This unit is the final unit dealing with the specific planning and treatment protocols applied to a range of primary tumours or as palliative treatment in the presence of metastass. It aims to utilise the knowledge and understanding gain in the previous two units and develop further the students understanding of complex planning and treatment techniques. Head and neck cancer, diseases of the central nervous system, prostate cancer and haematological cancers are used to provide the context and anatomical sites for consideration. Non co-planar planning, intensity modulation and more complex techniques such as stereotaxis and interstitial brachytherapy techniques are discussed. Issues related to total body irradiation with photons and electrons are also addressed. The unit content will be given structure and direction by the following professional issues:

  1. Disease, investigation and staging;
  2. Positioning, stabilisation and localisation;
  3. Planning and dosimetry; and
  4. Treatment delivery


On successful completion of this unit students will be able to demonstrate and communicate a broad and critical conceptual and practical understanding of:

  1. disease investigation, staging and role of adjuvant therapies for carcinomas affecting the nasopharynx, oral cavity, larynx, central nervous system and prostate and haematological neoplastic disorders, and paediatric malignancies;
  2. the differences between palliative and curative intent and the implications of previous treatment;
  3. the role and application of the various patient positioning including virtual simulation systems and patient coordinate systems;
  4. the role of advanced medical imaging modalities and examinations such as magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography, ultrasound and angiography in treatment approaches;
  5. non-coplanar and static/dynamic IMRT techniques and applications in terms of conformal, stereotactic and inverse planning techniques;
  6. more complex brachytherapy techniques for selected disease groups and sites;
  7. relevant treatment delivery issues particularly on line electronic portal imaging;
  8. early and late effects of treatment and follow up;
  9. relevant safety issues and documentation standards and practices;
  10. the advanced use of electrons in the treatment of malignancies


2 clinical action plans and accompanying comparative reports: 40%
Written examination (three hours): 60%


RTS5000, MMR5010



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