A Review of Safety, Quality Management and Practice Guidelines high dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy.
This white paper was commissioned by the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) Board of Directors to evaluate the status of safety and practice guidance for high dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy. Given the maturity of HDR brachytherapy technology, this white paper considers, from a safety point of view, the adequacy of general physics and quality assurance guidance, as well as clinical guidance documents available for the most common treatment sites. The rate of medical events in HDR brachytherapy procedures in the United States in 2009 and 2010 was 0.02 percent, corresponding to five-sigma performance. The events were not due to lack of guidance documents, but failures to follow those recommendations or human failures in the performance of tasks.
The White Paper reviews current guidance documents and offers recommendations regarding their application to delivery of HDR brachytherapy. It also suggests topics where additional research and guidance is needed.