This page provides links to a selection of online videos about radiotherapy and related subjects. I put it together mainly as a resource for new staff members at Vertual Ltd., but it might be useful for others too.
How is radiotherapy kept safe? (4m14s)
Simple overview of how X-ray beams are used to kill cancer cells while minimising damage to healthy tissue.
What happens during radiotherapy? (4m38s)
Patient-oriented introduction to the purpose and nature of radiotherapy. Shows some clips of the treatment room/system, and the patient setup process. There is an associated page of information on the NHS Choices website.
An insight into Radiotherapy (6m46s)
Overview of some of the staff and procedures involved in radiotherapy treatments, and a summary of why it’s used.
Linac / Treatment Room
The linear accelerator (LINAC) (3m10)
Excellent introduction to the main treatment equipment. Shows the gantry, couch, collimator/MLC, and electron applicator.
Treatment Delivery / Patient Setup
Treating the lungs (2m16s)
Patient setup and alignment for lung treatment. Shows the use of lasers, skin marks, and SSD (Source-Surface Distance).
Treating the head and neck (1m56s)
Patient setup and alignment for head-neck treatment. Shows the use of lasers, a face mask, and some of the treatment monitoring systems.
Treatment planning (2m52)
Overview of the treatment planning process, aimed at patient education. Focuses on CT scanning.
Treatment Planning (44s)
Very brief look at structure contouring in treatment planning.
Modelling doses and volumes (3m3s)
Excellent summary of using CT to inform treatment planning. Includes contouring, tumour/target volumes, organs-at-risk, alignment, and dose.
Dose calculation in 3D (3m27s)
Shows the treatment planning system. Includes visualisation of beam angles, MLCs, dose calculation, isodose lines, hot-spots, and wedges.
An overview of the simulator used during cancer treatment (3m38s)
Shows the simulator equipment used to plan and test treatments, as well as summarising some other aspects of the planning process.
Watch 4:00 to 5:00 for information about PET scans.
Physics / QA
Performance check: linear accelerator (4m26s)
Shows some of the equipment used to verify the equipment’s performance on a day-to-day basis.
Quality assuring the linear accelerator (1m38s)
Brief introduction to the regular quality assurance procedures.
Advanced / Technical Stuff
Inside the linear accelerator (2m30s)
Briefly introduces some of the internal workings of the Linac.
How a Linear Accelerator Works (8m24s)
Detailed summary of the internal workings of a Linac. Note: This is a marketing video, specific to Elekta.
What is Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT)? (5m44s)
Detailed information about IMRT. Note: This is a marketing video, specific to Varian.
Radiation Dose – Part 1 (5m11s)
Clear explanation of radiation dose concepts. Information largely relates to generic radiation sources, but similar principles apply in radiotherapy.
Dose volume histogram (1m37s)
Shows some of the calculations used to verify safe and effective treatment.
Treatment triumphs (3m18s)
Brief summary of how radiotherapy can fit in to the treatment process.
Treating prostate cancer (5m41s)
Comparison of external beam radiotherapy and brachytherapy.
Protection for treatment (5m15s)
Shows the creation of face masks used in head/neck treatment.
Radiation Oncology Patient Orientation (4m52)
General of the whole process from planning to treatment. Aimed at patient education.
Medical linac bunker design (5m26s)
Overview of the bunker setup surrounding medical linacs. Note that this does not necessarily apply to all setups.
If you want to watch more, you can browse the following massive playlist: Radiotherapy / Radiography (~2.5 hours). It contains many of the same videos as above, plus several more.