Welcome to the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Our mission is to provide the highest quality care to patients with all types of cancers and certain benign tumors. The department aims to achieve excellence in professionalism and performance of our services. We seek to create a climate that fosters innovation and allows patients access to the newest cutting edge treatments.
The Department of Radiation Oncology is a clinical section within the award-winning, nationally celebrated University of Colorado Hospital, within the larger University of Colorado Health system. The University of Colorado Cancer Center is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center in the Rocky Mountain Region.
In The News...
7/31/15 - Six members elected to ASTRO’s Board of Directors and Nominating Committee
The American Society for Radiation Oncology’s (ASTRO’s) members have elected three new officers to the Board of Directors and three members to serve on the Nominating Committee. Terms for all positions begin at the Annual Business Meeting on Tuesday, October 20, 2015 at 11:30 a.m. Central time, at ASTRO’s 57th Annual Meeting at the Henry B. González Convention Center in San Antonio.
The new officers to the Board of Directors are:President-electBrian D. Kavanagh, MD, MPH, FASTRO, University of Colorado School of Medicine, DenverDr. Kavanagh is professor and interim chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver, and an attending physician at the University of Colorado Hospital. Kavanagh is an active clinician with a primary focus on stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) and population data-based health services research. He is Co-Director of the ASTRO-AANS Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) Registry, and he has served ASTRO as a member of the Board of Directors (2011 to 2015) as the Vice-chair and then the Chair of the Health Policy Council; as Chair of the Payment Reform Task Group; and as a member of the Health Policy Council Regulatory Committee, the Communications Committee, the Clinical Affairs and Quality Committee, and the Code Development and Valuation Committee. His additional service has included the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Hospital Outpatient Payment Advisory Panel and the Ambulatory Payment Classification (APC) Advisory Panel, as well as a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s (NCCN) Policy Advisory Group. Continue Reading...
7/13/15 - Lucido off to Mayo
Clinic; Physics Residency wins CAMPEP re-accreditation
John Lucido, PhD, our most recent
graduate of the Medical Physics Residency Program, has accepted an offer to
join the Mayo Clinic Department of Radiation Oncology in Rochester, Minnesota. John
joined our program in 2013 after receiving his Ph.D. in medical physics from
the University of British Columbia. "John
earned high praise for his performance during his training period with us, and
we are all thrilled that he will be joining an outstanding group at Mayo", says Dr. Leah Schubert, Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology and Co-Director of the Medical Physics Residency Program.
Other exciting news from our medical physics group
is that the residency program has received continuation of accreditation from
the Commission on Accreditation of Medical
Physics Education Programs (CAMPEP) through
the end of 2017. The program started in 2012
and is the first accredited medical physics residency program in the Rocky
Mountain region. Adds Dr. Moyed Miften, Professor and Cheife of the Medical Physics section, "The program has been
very successful and in 2015 it received 182 applications for one residency
6/30/15- Follweiler wins First Annual Schuchman Professionalism Award
Christina (Tina) Follweiler, B.S. R. T. (R) (T), was
recently presented with the inaugural Annual Terri Schuchman Professionalism
Award in the University of Colorado Hospital Department of Radiation Oncology.
The award honors Terri Schuchman, who retired last year after an exemplary
career at UCH, during which time she consistently exemplified a compassionate
approach to patient care alongside attention to detail and an impeccable work
ethic and sense of responsibility. The award was chosen by members of the
Radiation Oncology Department Based Council and was presented to Tina on June
11, 2015, at the annual department awards and graduation ceremony, by David
Westerly, Chair of the DBC. Terri was also on hand to assist with the
3/20/15- Fisher and Koo
receive funding to study new therapy in metastatic breast cancer patient
Dr. Christine M. Fisher, Assistant
Professor of Radiation Oncology and Residency Program Director, and Dr. Philip
Koo, Section Chief for Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, were recently
awarded a $500,000 grant from Bayer to support a research study investigating a
novel treatment for breast cancer patients with disease that has metastasized
The major focus of the project will be to refine treatment methods for metastatic
breast cancer patients that may have a higher burden of bony disease. These
tumors can act very aggressively and grow to invade surrounding normal
structures in the spine, causing neurological dysfunction, pain, fractures, and
other problems. In such cases, it is necessary to use local therapy such as
high doses of radiation or orthopedic surgery as possible in an effort to stop
debilitating local progression of the disease. However, it is difficult to treat
many sites at once while protecting the bone marrow, which is a potential major
advantage of Radium 223 being studied.
In this trial, the goal will be to treat the bony disease while
maintaining high quality of life for our metastatic breast cancer
patients. Outcomes studied will include
not only time until new bony events, but also patient-centered metrics such as
pain and need for narcotic pain medicine.
This will offer another tool in the armamentarium of treatment options
for our patients at the University of Colorado Diane O’Connor Thompson Breast
2/2/2015 - Moyed Miften and Bernard Jones: Awarded research funding for treating pancreas cancer:
Moyed Miften, PhD, Professor and Chief of Medical Physics (left), and Bernard Jones, PhD, Assistant Professor (right), recently were awarded a $194,000 contract from Varian Medical Systems. The money will support their research project entitled, “Patient-Specific Tumor Motion and Respiratory Gated Radiation Delivery for Pancreatic SBRT.” It is to study new, aggressive techniques for pancreatic cancer radiotherapy. Continue reading...
11/5/2014 - Dr. Rabinovitch Invited as visitng professor and cancer expert
Rachel Rabinovitch, MD, professor of Radiation Oncology, CU School of Medicine, has been invited to serve as a visiting professor and expert consultant in breast cancer diagnosis and management at several medical centers in Israel during December and January. Rabinovitch will represent the CU Cancer Center in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, delivering lectures to students and trainees and collaborating on research projects with scientists and clinicians who have expertise with the BRCA+ (genetic mutation) population. Israel’s population has the highest BRCA+ prevalence of any nation in the world. Continue reading...
Great strides have been made in reducing patient wait times by improving patient flow into the clinic and removing bottlenecks in the process. These small changes resulted in significant improvement in patient flow. The average time from referral to first contact fell dramatically within weeks of the change, from 2.4 days to 1 day. Likewise, the average time from referral to appointment made dropped from 4.4 days to 2.5 days. Continue reading...