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Last Updated: 08/28/17

APS, AAPM & RRP Create Video for Medical Students on the Ascendancy of the Medical Physics in Radiotherapy

The American Physical Society (APS) recently reached out to the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) and to the physics efforts within the NCI radiation Research Program in order to apprise their membership of over 50,000 physicists about the opportunities for physics contributions to biomedical research. As part of that interaction the following video was produced and shown during the recent annual APS meeting in New Orleans. It represents one of the disruptive innovations led by physicists, which has been the development of proton and heavier particle therapy. However, there is significant uncertainty of the treatment delivery of particles due to the very precise depths at which they stop within patients. The uncertainties of dose within the patient are being addressed by in-vivo measurements of dose deposition, or surrogates thereof. Examples include the measurement of prompt gamma radiation produced by the proton beam as it traverses the patient. Positron-Emission-Tomography (PET) scans have also been used to measure the tissue activation by the proton beam. Finally, the measurement of sound waves produced by pulsed proton beams leading to rapid expansions of the irradiated tissue has recently been successfully pursued.

 

Download a transcript of the video here.