Comprehensive and Practical Brachytherapy

Brussels, Belgium

An essential and comprehensive introduction to brachytherapy in daily practice, covering gynaecological, head and neck, genitourinary, breast, skin, paediatric cancers and more.


The course is aimed primarily at trainees in radiotherapy, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and radiation therapists (RTTs) wishing to acquaint themselves with the latest developments in brachytherapy. This course is also highly recommended as an essential basis for prostate cancer, gynaecological cancer, and advanced medical physics brachytherapy courses.

Course director

  • Bradley Pieters, Radiation Oncologist, Amsterdam University Medical Centers , Amsterdam (NL)


  • Dimos Baltas, Medical Physicist, University of Freiburg, Freiburg (DE)
  • Åsa Carlsson Tedgren, Medical Physicist, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm (SE)
  • Cyrus Chargari, Radiation Oncologist, Gustave Roussy Cancer Campus, Villejuif (FR)
  • José Luis Guinot Rodríguez, Radiation Oncologist, Fundación Instituto Valenciano de Oncología, Valencia (ES)
  • Peter Hoskin, Radiation Oncologist, Mount Vernon Hospital, London (UK)
  • Andrea Slocker Escarpa, Radiation Oncologist, Institut Català d’Oncologia, Barcelona (ES)

Contouring administrator

  • Andrea Slocker Escarpa, Radiation Oncologist, Institut Catala d’Oncologia, Barcelona (ES)

The course aims to:

  • Cover the basic and general principles of brachytherapy: historical notes on evolution of brachytherapy, sources, after loading systems, imaging for brachytherapy, dosimetry, the essentials of ICRU reports, uncertainties in brachytherapy, radiobiology of different time dose patterns (LDR, HDR, PDR and permanent implants), radioprotection and organisation of a brachytherapy department
  • Discuss different technical and dosimetrical aspects of interstitial, endoluminal and endocavitary brachytherapy
  • Discuss the main clinical subjects: gynaecological (cervix, endometrium), head and neck (oral cavity, oropharynx), urology (a.o. prostate seed implants), breast (a.o. APBI), skin, bladder and paediatric malignancies
  • Illustrate practical examples of brachytherapy treatment planning
  • Provide exercises for practical understanding.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course participants should be able to understand the:

  • Essentials of brachytherapy sources, physics, applicators and afterloaders
  • Essentials of brachytherapy dose planning, possibilities and pitfalls of stepping source optimisation techniques
  • Essentials of low-dose rate, high-dose rate and pulsed-dose rate radiobiology
  • Indications and contraindications of brachytherapy in clinical oncology
  • Essentials of different applicators to perform brachytherapy.

Course Content

  • Principles of radioactivity
  • Sources used in brachytherapy
  • Physics and dose calculation
  • Image-guided brachytherapy
  • Dosimetric uncertainties
  • Clinical radiobiology in brachytherapy: general principles
  • Radioprotection and afterloaders
  • Optimisation of stepping source brachytherapy.
  • Permanent seed and HDR prostate implants
  • Interstitial brachytherapy
  • Place of intracavitary brachytherapy in cervix, endometrium and vaginal cancer
  • Place of endoluminal brachytherapy in oesophageal and bronchus carcinoma
  • Brachytherapy for breast, bladder, anal canal, head and neck, and skin cancer
  • Brachytherapy for paediatric malignancies
  • Recommendations for recording and reporting in interstitial, intracavitary and endoluminal brachytherapy
  • Use of DVH-parameters
  • Practical examples of interstitial, intracavitary
  • Applicator localisation for treatment planning
  • Permanent and temporary brachytherapy treatment planning
  • Practical exercises.


Before commencing this course participants should be qualified or in training as a medical doctor, medical physicist or radiation therapist (RTT) in the field of brachytherapy.

Teaching Methods

  • 18 hours of lectures
  • 6 hours of hands on practical sessions on applicators and treatment planning implantations
  • 5 hours of contouring case homework and discussions.

This course consists of didactic lectures, practical sessions with applicators, interactive sessions with treatment planning stations and clinical aspects and examples.

Methods of Assessment

Evaluation form.




Programme available here

Key Words

Brachytherapy, basic course, clinical aspects, state-of-the-art implantation techniques, physics.

Further Reading

Please consult the ESTRO website page of this course for further information.

2nd edition GEC-ESTRO Handbook ( accessible for ESTRO members.


Comprehensive and Practical Brachytherapy, Brussels, Belgium, 09/02/2020-13/02/2020 has been accredited by the European Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (EACCME®) with 24 European CME credits (ECMEC®s). Each medical specialist should claim only those hours of credit that he/she actually spent in the educational activity





Novotel Brussels City Centre

Rue de la Vierge Noire 32

1000 Brussels



Participants can book single rooms at Novotel Brussels City Centre at a preferential rate until 08 January 2020, including breakfast, service and VAT but not city tax (4.25€/room/night).

Price changes from legislation are borne by the ultimate consumer.

To book a room please fill in the accommodation form and send it back to


ESTRO members can order products at substantially reduced prices. Please note that in order to benefit from the member price, you must renew your membership for 2020 before registering to the course.To benefit from these member rates, please visit the membership page to become a member or renew your membership BEFORE proceeding with your order.



Early rate

Late rate

In-training members*   500 EUR  675 EUR
Members   650 EUR   775 EUR
Non Members   800 EUR  900 EUR

* Members with specialty RadiationTherapist (RTT) may register at the In Training fee

Early rates are applied up to three months before the starting date of the course. 
Late rates are applied three months before the starting date of the course.

The fee includes the course material, coffees, lunches, and the social event.

Advance registration & payment are required.

On-site registration will not be available.

Since the number of participants is limited, late registrants are advised to contact the ESTRO office before payment, to inquire about availability of places. Access to homework and/or course material will become available upon receipt of full payment.

Insurance and cancellation

The organiser does not accept liability for individual medical, travel or personal insurance. Participants are strongly advised to take out their own personal insurance policies.   

In case an unforeseen event would force ESTRO to cancel the meeting, the Society will reimburse the participants fully the registration fees. ESTRO will not be responsible for the refund of travel and accommodation costs.

In case of cancellation, full refund of the registration fee minus 15% for administrative costs may be obtained up to three months before the course and 50% of the fee up to one month before the course. No refund will be made if the cancellation request is postmarked less than one month before the start of the course.


ESTRO members from economically challenged countries may register at a preferential rate of 350 Euro if three conditions are met:

  1. Only ESTRO members for 2020 are eligible (please make sure your 2020 membership is in order before you apply for the reduced fees)
  2. Only one course per person per year can be subsidized by ESTRO
  3. Sponsored candidates are not entitled to reduced fees (the invoicing address has to be the one of the participant)  

Please note: 

  • We can only guarantee a certain number of reduced fees per course
  • Application deadlines are the same as early registration fees (3 months before the course date

List of Economically challenged countries and eligible courses