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2018 : Beatson ahead with a world first

The Beatson is the world’s first cancer treatment centre to prepare highly complex radiotherapy treatment plans for head and neck, gynaecological and prostate cancer patients in a matter of minutes.

The Radiotherapy Physics team is first in the world to apply revolutionary multi-criteria optimisation software, which allows the planner to produce multiple treatment plans and determine the optimal and individualised solution for that patient. At least 20-30 potential treatment plans for the patient are produced. This new way of working has led to some patients having their dose of radiation to healthy tissue reduced by 20-30 per cent. It substantially lessens the probability of adverse reactions for the patient while having no detrimental effect on the effectiveness of the treatment.

Garry Currie, head of radiotherapy physics, said: “I didn’t expect us to reach this stage during my career...this is a real game changer...Around 200 of our patients are now benefiting from these rapid and high-quality treatment plans every month...the results will continue to improve as more cancer centres start working in the same way and more and more collaborations take place... we’re now learning with teams and centres as far afield as Australia.”

Full story in Staff Newsletter

Garry Currie head of radiotherapy and physics at the Beatson