Purpose: To review brachytherapy resources and to explore current practice patterns in Italy. Material and methods: In 2016, on behalf of the Italian Association of Radiation Oncology (AIRO), the Brachytherapy Study Group proposed conducting a survey in order to identify brachytherapy practice patterns. An electronic questionnaire was sent to all radiotherapy centres in Italy, asking for: 1. General information on the Radiation Oncology Centre (affiliation, whether brachytherapy was delivered or not); 2. Brachytherapy equipment and human resources; 3. Brachytherapy procedures; 4. Brachytherapy assessment (number of patients treated annually, treated sites, and different modalities of treatments). Results: A total of 66 questionnaires were returned (33.5% of all brachytherapy centers in Italy), out of which 48 (74%) from non-academic hospitals, 6 (10%) from academic hospitals, and 12 (16%) from private institutions. Most centers (84%) had only one brachytherapy machine; 44% did not deliver brachytherapy treatments or delivered less than demanded because of the lack of staff or expertise, need of modernization, or other reasons. The majority of treatments were administered to outpatients for gynecological tumors. Conclusions: This survey illustrates the current status of brachytherapy in Italy and should encourage collaboration to develop, implement, and monitor its use when appropriate.
- AIRO (Italian Association of Radiation Oncology) brachytherapy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging