Pioneering and implementing new technology successfully in a radiation oncology clinic requires hard work, team effort and management support. Over the last 15 years, we have pioneered the clinical implementation of intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) as well as combined radio-gene-therapy in the treatment of cancer. The entire department including physicists, dosimetrists, therapists, nurses, managers, data managers, radiation oncologists and residents in training, other medical specialists e.g. neurosurgeons, urologists, pathologists, radiologists, molecular biologists and many others have joined forces and contributed to the success. IMRT has transitioned from an initial experimental approach to a standard of care approach now in various disease sites. We are entering a new era of image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT) and molecular-targeted therapy and we continue to strive to implement these new technologies in the clinics. Frameless stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) have now become a clinical reality. Again, all these require a tremendous amount of efficient management and cooperation among all departmental staff. Five fundamental principles which can help the successful pioneering and implementation of innovative radiation oncology approaches will be discussed. These include identifying a project champion(s), pursuing a multi-disciplinary approach, showing clinical efficacy and return on investment (ROI), ability to articulate the project and celebrating the successful implementation.
- Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)
- Radiation oncology
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology