Radiotherapy patients at Northampton General Hospital are among the first in the UK to be benefitting from the use of artificial intelligence. It’s being used to determine the best treatment for head and neck cancer, a particularly complex area to treat due to the proximity of radiosensitive organs like the face, spine and brainstem.
The revolutionary software, called 'RapidPlan', learns from the last 100 treatments at Northampton General to generate an individualised plan for new patients.
Not only does this new way of working provide patients with the best possible treatment for their needs, but with minimal human interaction, it saves time. Before this, clinicians and medical physics staff would have spent time analysing scans to decide on a treatment that satisfies the many rules for a plan.
The hospital hopes the new system, made by the company Varian, will help create more consistency across departments. Staff are also looking to create a supermodel for radiotherapy treatment across the country.
The software has already been used to plan the treatment of 12 patients and will also be used on Northampton General’s gynaecology patients.