Radiotherapy treatment verification in the UK: an audit of practice in 2004.
Henry, Ann M
Cullen, James N
Price, Patricia M
AffiliationWade Centre for Radiotherapy Research, Christie Hospital NHS Trust, Manchester, UK.
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AbstractAIMS: To audit current practice related to treatment verification undertaken in radiotherapy departments throughout the UK. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A questionnaire was circulated to the radiotherapy service managers of 62 radiotherapy centres in the UK. This looked in detail at the department demographics, imaging equipment, site-specific verification protocols, and training and competency assessment of staff responsible for verification. RESULTS: The response rate was 48% (30/62). All departments were using megavoltage imaging equipment in routine clinical practice. Twenty-four out of 29 (83%) departments that had electronic portal imaging capability were using image analysis software for verification. Twenty-nine out of 30 (97%) departments had site-specific written verification protocols. Twenty out of 30 (67%) treatment centres audited set-up errors within their department. Forty-three per cent of centres were using simulator image as the reference image of choice across all sites. Electronic portal imaging, alone or in combination with portal film, was being used for verification in 75% of the centres. Fifty-three per cent of centres used off-line correction strategies for measuring set-up errors across all sites. Radiographer-led interventions were primarily in the pelvis. CONCLUSION: Presently in the UK, verification strategies vary widely at individual treatment sites and between departments. Dedicated departmental verification teams, with input from radiographers, physicists and clinicians, may assist in the effective implementation of evidence-based verification. The inclusion of comprehensive verification protocols within multicentre radiotherapy trials encourages standardisation across treatment centres.
CitationRadiotherapy treatment verification in the UK: an audit of practice in 2004. 2006, 18 (1):15-22 Clin Oncol
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