2011:25 Report from SSM’s scientific council on ionizing radiation within oncology, 2010

In this report, three main areas have been highlighted: quality assurance (QA), quality control (QC) and late side-effects including the risk of radiation-induced secondary malignancies. These areas reflect the ongoing activities in leading international radiotherapy organisations. Specific attention is given to new technologies such as image-guided radiotherapy and intensity-modulated radiotherapy and how these influence QA, QC and late side-effects. Late side-effects of radiotherapy are also discussed in the context of paediatric oncology and radiotherapy in combination with chemotherapy. The council states that there is a lack of consensus, both nationally and internationally, on how to optimally perform QA of radiotherapy with advanced technologies.

The council therefore recommends that SSM increase its commitment to QA and QC in radiotherapy. The council has also identified a limited knowledge base for late side-effects of both old and new forms of treatment. Within radiotherapy, the advice given to SSM is to support and emphasize the importance of registration of quality parameters and long-term outcomes in order to increase the knowledge base for late effects. SSM should also support development of a system in which new and unexpected adverse effects of radiotherapy can be reported and systematically compiled.