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Acta Oncol. 2002;41(6):562-5.

Norwegian oncologists' expectations of intensity-modulated radiotherapy.

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  • 1Department of Radiophysics, Haukeland Hospital, and Section of Oncology, Institute of Medicine, Medical Faculty, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway.


AIthough intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) may increase the therapeutic ratio of radiotherapy for a range of malignancies, only a few IMRT treatments have yet been performed in the Nordic countries. The scores derived from a national survey to assess Norwegian oncologists' expectations of IMRT are presented. A questionnaire was distributed to all consultants in oncology at Norwegian radiotherapy clinics. Summary scores of daily general radiotherapy workload (DGRTW), acquaintance with IMRT (AI) and expectations of IMRT (EI) were derived. Thirty-nine questionnaires (67%) were returned from a total of 58 oncologists. The oncologists' scores on the AI scale (mean score: 7.5 out of 21) were rather low. Their AI scores were found to be positively correlated with their DGRTW. Higher scores on the EI scale were documented (mean score: 6.2 out of 14): 15 oncologists (39%) rated IMRT as one of the three major contributors to potentially increased cancer survival. Oncologists treating patients with prostate, head and neck, gastrointestinal and CNS tumours had higher EI scores than the other oncologists (7.7 vs. 5.1; p = 0.01). The Norwegian radiation oncologists' expectations of IMRT are high in terms of both the potential clinical benefit and the rate of implementation. This should encourage the radiotherapy communities to continue (or rapidly initiate) their efforts in providing the routines required for safe implementation of IMRT.

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