Paediatric Radiotherapy - PDF version
1-3 December 2019, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Could you please briefly introduce yourself?
I am in my final year of speciality training in clinical oncology in the UK and I am pursuing a career in paediatric radiotherapy.
Why did you choose to attend this course? (please mention if it’s your first ESTRO course)
This was the first European SocieTy for Radiotherapy and Oncology (ESTRO) course that I had attended, and the main reason for signing up was that it offered a comprehensive overview of paediatric radiotherapy.
What aspects of the course were the most interesting and why?
The didactic lectures were extremely useful as they covered the essential information regarding key areas of paediatric radiotherapy. The interactive contouring practice sessions were very educational as we were able to compare our work with that of an “expert” and a diagnostic radiologist was present in these sessions. We were encouraged to bring along information regarding cases we had treated to present at the course, and this led to productive discussions that highlighted the practical challenges that we face in the real world.
Did the course activities improve your knowledge and skills in the relevant subject?
The various talks that covered the main topics in paediatric radiotherapy helped to fill the gaps in my knowledge, and the interactive/practical sessions encouraged me to improve my target volume delineation. More specifically, the presentations from the paediatric oncologist were really beneficial in providing an overview of paediatric oncology and in explaining the fundamental differences of biology between child and adult cancers.
Did the course meet your expectations? If so, how?
The course met my expectations in providing a comprehensive overview of paediatric radiotherapy and it managed to do so in a very relaxed and friendly environment. The faculty members were very approachable and the delegates were keen to share experiences from their own practice. It was a pleasant surprise to see that 27 countries were represented and this created a real feeling of global diversity at the course.
List three important ‘takeaways’ following the course.
- Irradiating children is a complex and challenging task and so, to do it well, we need constantly to seek out knowledge and support from both local and external colleagues within the paediatric radiotherapy community.
- Good quality target volume delineation requires us to form close working relationships with our diagnostic radiology colleagues.
- Protons are not the answer to all the problems in paediatric radiotherapy and therefore, much work remains to be done in important areas such as metastatic/relapsed disease.
How would you encourage someone who has never been to an ESTRO Course to join this course next year/ in two years?
It’s a great opportunity to spend three days deepening your knowledge of paediatric radiotherapy and reflecting on your own practice. The course is also a fantastic opportunity to meet and speak with other people involved in paediatric radiotherapy from around the world.
Dr Kazumi Chia
Speciality Registrar in Clinical Oncology
Children and Young People’s Unit
The Royal Marsden Hospital