4th AROI-ESTRO Gynaecology Teaching Course: 3D radiotherapy with a special emphasis on implementation of MR/CT-based brachytherapy in cervical cancer - PDF Version
4 - 7 March 2020, Mumbai, India
AROI course directors
Umesh Mahantshetty, Radiation Oncologist, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, India
Jamema Swamidas, Medical Physicist, Advanced Centre for Treatment, Research and Education in Cancer (ACTREC), Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai, India
ESTRO course directors
Richard Pötter, Radiation Oncologist, Medical University Hospital, Vienna, Austria
Kari Tanderup, Medical Physicist, University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark
My name is Aung Lin Aung and I am an assistant oncologist from Pinlon Cancer Centre in Yangon, Myanmar. Cervical cancer constitutes the majority of the cancers suffered by patients who receive care at our centre.
Brachytherapy is an integral part of the treatment for these patients and it is the vision of my head of department, Dr Min Din, to build up a team of doctors, physicists and radiotherapists dedicated to implementing quality image-guided brachytherapy at our centre. The course I attended, which was organised by the Association of Radiation Oncologists of India (AROI) and the European SocieTy for Radiotherapy and Oncology (ESTRO), is a renowned course in the region for its in-depth coverage of brachytherapy, from the basic science to sophisticated techniques. This course is the most suitable and accessible for us, and thus this year we came as a team of six delegates including our chief physicist. The parallel session led by experienced staff was really rewarding, as we could present our practices and teachers and experienced members helped to guide us and offered valuable advice to improve our practices. The attendance of physicists enabled us to discuss several new ideas that came up during discussions. Our team of physicians and physicist has now updated and standardised our brachytherapy practices, from imaging and loading patterns to reporting. Our physicist appreciated the workshop sessions where she was able to exchange experience and practices with a friendly and helpful community of physicists from other centres.
Of the many things we learnt, highlights included: the integration of magnetic resonance imaging into the computed tomography environment of radiotherapy; the true appreciation of correlation between doses and toxicities; and the ways in which we could adapt our practices to achieve better treatment outcomes.
We have been aiming to develop interstitial capabilities for some time. During the course we learnt that interstitial brachytherapy was achievable for us. Talks by Dr Mahantshetty really inspired us to start simply and to progress gradually towards perfection, as his centre had.
This course really helps the staff of young centres like ours to take the first essential baby steps in implementing image-guided brachytherapy and I am convinced that staff of centres in their early stages of development will benefit from this course. For those with experience, I am sure this course will help you fine tune and brush up the art of brachytherapy.
Dr Aung Lin Aung
Department of Radiation Oncology
Pinlon Cancer Centre
Yangon, Republic of the Union of Myanmar