Patterns of care for brachytherapy in Europe results in Spain
- Cite this article as:
- Torrecilla, J.L., Guedea, F., Heeren, G. et al. Clin Transl Oncol (2006) 8: 362. doi:10.1007/s12094-006-0183-9
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In 2003 ESTRO began a project whose primary objective, was to make a map in the European area of infrastructures in technology and personnel for brachytherapy.
Material and method
A survey and a web site were elaborated. The survey was sent to the 76 Spanish Radiation Oncology departments in May 2003.
By the end of 2003, 66 (86.8%) services had responded, 40 (71.4%) of which had brachytherapy. The services with brachytherapy treated 73.5% of the total patients, an average of 1,119 patients. The mean number of patients treated with brachytherapy by department was 135.5 and the number of applications was 265 annually. The average number of specialists was 7, 4 of them trained in brachytherapy. The average weekly work load of the radiation oncologists, physicists, and technician was 22.6 h, 13.8 h and 21.0 h, respectively. The mean time dedicated to each patient by radiation oncologists, physicists and technicians was 9.2 h; 6.19 h; 7.2 h, respectively. The total number of afterloaders was 43 (22 HDR, 18 LDR, 3 PDR). The tumours most frequently treated with brachytherapy were gynaecological (56.24%), breast (14.2%) and prostate (11.7%). High dose rate was used in 47.46% of the patients and low dose rate in 47.24%.
Between 1997 and 2002 there was an increase of 50.53% in patients treated with brachytherapy.
The survey shows the brachytherapy resources and activy in Spain up to 2003. Increased use of brachytherapy in prostate tumours, prevalence of gynaecology brachytherapy and similar number of treatments with HDR and LDR are demonstrated in the Patterns of Care of Brachytherapy in Europe (PCBE) study in Spain.