Experienced, compassionate staff with UConn Health’s Division of Radiation Oncology provides specialized, state-of-the-art treatments for a wide variety of malignant diseases.
A Multidisciplinary Team Approach
A radiation oncologist works with other physicians within the Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center to merge surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy into an individualized treatment plan. The treatment plan is determined by each patient's unique clinical situation. After optimal treatment is determined, the radiation oncologist discusses the preliminary plan of treatment, potential side effects and possible alternative procedures with the patient and family.
Much thought and care go into this process in order to achieve maximum effectiveness of the treatment. This results in care that is precise, accurate and that optimizes the treatment plan for each and every patient.
A Team that Delivers Quality, Personalized Care
The division is headed by a radiation oncologist, a physician who specializes in radiation therapy for cancer patients and examines and reviews all x-rays and laboratory tests and decides if radiation therapy is appropriate. All radiation oncologists are board certified and actively participate in the Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center's Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Program, the Head and Neck Cancer Program and other specialty programs.
Other members of this highly coordinated radiation oncology team include:
- Radiation therapists, who operate the radiation treatment machines, are all licensed and have graduated from accredited programs and receive ongoing in-house continuing medical education.
- Radiation oncology nurses, who are all registered nurses and have expertise in oncology nursing. In addition to providing expert nursing care and patient and family information, the nursing staff assures that patients gain access to a variety of needed support services, including dietitians, social services, and visiting nurses.
- Dosemitrists and physicists, who work closely with the physician to calibrate equipment and assist in precise dose calculations for treatment planning.
Advanced Treatment and Technology
We offer many innovative programs, such as Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) and Image-Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT), stereotactic radiosurgery and radiotherapy.
- TomoTherapy® Hi-Art® Treatment System is the most exciting new development in radiation oncology in a generation. The Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center is the only site in Connecticut offering this advanced technology. Unlike other therapies, TomoTherapy acquires 3D images of tumors before every treatment; delivers precise treatments in rotating beams of radiation that constantly modulate to the exact size and shape of the tumor; targets large, small and multiple lesions; and minimizes radiation to healthy tissue. It is one of the most sophisticated IMRT/IGRT treatment machines in clinical use today.
- CT-directed, 3D conformal radiation therapy and IMRT, which provides the radiation oncology team with a sophisticated "3D" view of the treatment field. This provides more detail of both tumor and surrounding tissue, so the radiation dose is delivered more precisely.
- High-energy, advanced linear accelerator, which is fully computerized for patient safety, gives the radiation oncologist more ability to maximize treatment for even the most deep-seated tumors, while minimizing normal tissue damage.
- Stereotactic radiotherapy and radiosurgery, which uses intensity-modulated conformal techniques and is often used in the treatment of benign and malignant lesions of the brain, as well as other body sites. This allows the delivery of high doses of focal radiation therapy to the treatment site, with relative sparing of adjacent healthy tissue.
- Brachytherapy, places radiation sources in close proximity of the tumor. Radioactive isotopes are placed within the body for a period of time, so relatively high doses are delivered to the tumor, while minimizing exposure to healthy tissue. This form of radiation therapy is often used with cancers of the head and neck, extremities and gynecological cancers.