School of Physics and Astrophysics

Postgraduate research profiles

Contact

Calyn Rede Moulton

Phone: (+61 8) 6488 2738


Start date

Aug 2012

Submission date

Aug 2016

Calyn Rede Moulton

Calyn Rede Moulton profile photo

Thesis

Spatial dose-response models of normal tissue effects for patients undergoing prostate radiotherapy

Summary

Prostate cancer can be effectively treated by radiation therapy; however, treatment is limited by radiation toxicity in surrounding genito-urinary and gastro-intestinal anatomy. One option is to use external X-ray beams combined with a 'boost' dose using radioactive sources inserted into the prostate. The project utilises data on 193 patients treated with this combination therapy to develop mathematical models to describe how radiation distributions relate to toxicity seen in those patients. The results will be compared to the same effects in 750 patients who received only the external X-rays. The project involves spatially registering 3D diagnostic image sets from the two treatments and determining the relationship between the combined radiation dose distributions and observed toxicities. Statistical models will be used to develop guidelines to minimise radiation toxicity in future patients. Simultaneously, mathematical models will be investigated to describe the spatial dose distribution across the tissue defining the walls of the rectum and bladder to relate the distributions to the treatment side-effects.

Why my research is important

The treatment plan for each component of a combination therapy is commonly assessed via a dose-volume histogram. However, a limitation of using a dose-volume histogram for each component of a combination therapy is that it does not contain spatial information from the dose distribution. Another consideration is that the total dose delivered by the combination therapy may not be accurately reflected by using individual dose-volume histograms for each therapy component. This research is important as it will develop methods for obtaining an accurate total dose distribution for the combination therapy and investigate methods for including spatial information from the total dose distribution in dose-response models. The results from the project will be used to improve future treatment plans by making possible the use of total dose distributions. Additionally, the research will support further reductions in treatment side-effects by including spatial information in addition to dose-volume histograms when determining guidelines for minimising radiation toxicity.

Funding

  • Australian Postgraduate Award
  • UWA Top-up Scholarship
  • Ana Africh Postgraduate Scholarship In Medical Research


 

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Last updated:
Thursday, 17 April, 2014 9:11 AM

http://www.physics.uwa.edu.au/728106