The efforts of the full-time clinical faculty are dedicated to resident training through experience. The principles of oncology and therapeutic radiology are learned through carefully supervised evaluations of new patients emphasizing a holistic therapeutic approach. Residents are encouraged early on to take a leading role in the care of their patients. The resident follows each patient longitudinally from consultation through treatment planning, during the course of therapy, and in follow-up clinics.
The Department of Radiation Oncology at Upstate Medical University continues to be at the forefront of the latest treatment technology and clinical research, providing residents with a rich and comprehensive training environment. Practical experience is gained in the use of conventional linear accelerator-based and helical-based intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and image guided radiation therapy (IGRT).
Residents participate in a robust stereotactic radio-surgery program comprised of Gamma Knife and linear accelerator based SBRT. Brachytherapy training is achieved through an extensive intracavitary and interstitial brachytherapy program that includes a remote HDR afterloader. Treatment planning includes inverse planning for IMRT utilizing images from an on-site CT Simulator. The treatment planning systems at University Hospital are equipped with functional image fusion and are fully networked with the treatment planning systems at the off-site locations.
Training is provided through didactic courses and laboratory exercises in radiological physics, radiation biology, tumor and radiation pathology, as well as multiple interdisciplinary conferences providing the resident with an extensive fund of knowledge. Along with participation in many cooperative clinical trials programs (COG, GOG, CALGB, etc.) graduates are equipped to provide comprehensive patient care.
Formal lectures cover radiation biology, physics, and clinical radiation oncology, clinical trial design, biostatistics, imaging (PET, SPECT, MRI, etc.), medical oncology and pediatric oncology. Multidisciplinary training will be emphasized as ample interaction occurs through clinical conferences, tumor boards, grand rounds and seminars. Electives are encouraged with the other oncologic specialties.