2012:20 Report from SSM’s scientific council on ionizing radiation within oncology, 2011

Many cancer patients are treated in accordance with written guidelines or clinical trial protocols. The scientific council states that the radiotherapy part in those guidelines and protocols is less well specified than other therapies such as surgery and chemotherapy.

This report identifies the key aspects of modern radiotherapy from international radiotherapy organisations and scientific papers in order to develop written radiotherapy guidelines and clinical trial protocols. Associated relevant information to be listed in protocol templates are analyzed and discussed.

The report provides a framework for the description of the entire radiotherapy process in both clinical care programmes and trial protocols based on clinical as well as physical aspects. The framework includes preparatory imaging, specification of treatment prescription, relations to other therapies and treatment planning.

The results are applicable in protocols for palliative care as well as for advanced treatments. The report discusses the importance of clinical evaluation in clinical trials and in routine care as well as the importance to follow quality management guidelines when writing protocols and treatment programmes. Finally the report also discusses special considerations for brachy therapy. The scientific council recommends SSM to promote the development of protocol templates to use when writing the radiotherapy part in care programmes and clinical trial protocols.