- Department: Physics
- Module co-ordinator: Dr. Mikhail Bashkanov
- Credit value: 20 credits
- Credit level: H
- Academic year of delivery: 2024-25
- See module specification for other years: 2023-24
The module is aiming to expand physics students' erudition in less explored but more employability attractive interdisciplinary areas of physics - medical physics.
Pre-requisites: No pre-requisites; Nuclear Physics Y2 is highly desirable
|Semester 2 2024-25
Module will give an overview of the physics, methods and equipment employed in modern medical physics. The basic interaction processes of particles with matter are outlined, including the interaction of ionising and non-ionising radiation with biological systems. Radiotherapy methods including brachytherapy, molecular therapy, external beam therapy (neutron, photon, proton, ion, anti-proton) and the effects of radiation at the cellular level are presented. The course will outline the latest development in intensity-modulated mixed-beam radiotherapy. Methods to measure and monitor radiation are discussed. Methods and signal processing employed for high-field/squid MR imaging, PET imaging, SPECT imaging, and ultrasound will be presented. Methods of production (reactor based, cyclotron based, isotope generators) and use of various radiopharmaceuticals will be discussed. Practical use of various detection techniques and methods will be demonstrated in laboratory sessions. The course will include a significant component based on computer simulation. Links to industry will also be explored.
At the completion of the course students will have acquired the skills to:
Understand the detailed interactions of radiation with matter and biological tissue. Apply this knowledge to compare and contrast a range of radiotherapy techniques
Describe the detectors and methods used to monitor radiation dose and biological damage from radiation
Explain MRI and PET imaging, how the compare and how they are realised in practical devices
Demonstrate the use of computer simulations to investigate aspects of medical physics, detector design, and treatment design
Synthesise, present, and discuss the applications of physics techniques in a specific medical example case
Introduction. Course structure.
The basic interaction processes of particles with matter. Interaction of ionising and non-ionising radiation with biological systems.
Radioactivity. Radiation safety and security. Radiation protection standards. Dosimetry. Radiation sources. Radiation protection in case of nuclear accidents.
Brachytherapy, molecular therapy
External beam therapy (photon). Intensity modulated radiotherapy. Effects of radiation at cellular level.
External exotic hadron beam therapy (proton, ion). Accelerators for hadron beam therapy. Beam properties. Mixed beam therapy.
Fast neutron therapy. Thermal neutron therapy.
Exotic external hadron beam therapy (pion, anti-proton). Fast neutron. Thermal neutron therapy.
Nuclear radio-isotopes used in medicine. Methods of production (nuclear reactors, cyclotrons, isotope generators). Radiopharmaceuticals.
Project meeting. GEANT4 computer simulation software.Simulation of external beam therapy with GEANT4.
Tomography, basic principles and mathematical methods. The overview of modern tomography techniques. Imaging.
Detectors. Scintillating detectors (plastic, crystals), Solid state, Trackers, Compton cameras.
Computer tomography, CT
Positron Emission Tomography
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI/MRT). Physics of MRI. Signal processing. High-field MRI. Squid-MRI. MRI equipment.
Modern development in medical physics. Cutting-edge technologies, detectors, techniques. The medical physics of tomorrow.
Visit to the MRI/PET or medical facility.
Image processing an image analysis
Playing with Tabletop MRI
Real examples of Geant4 simulations
Everyday Medical Physics: temperature, blood pressure, electrocardiogram, heart rate, oxygen level
Brain activity, brain-computer interface, artificial intellect.
Students will work individually and in groups in both workshop and laboratory environments, with input and support from postgrads and RAs.
Tutorials: 6 Sheets, 5 question each.
|% of module mark
|Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
Medical Physics Exam
Medical Physics Project:
Simulation of external beam therapy with GEANT4. (reference example – standard tissue and 10MeV photon beam.)
Various types of beams including photons, electrons, pions, and heavy ions
Energies 1, 10, 20, 100 MeV for photons 20-200 for charged particles
Dose – depth
Dose – radial extension
Beam spread, divergence
Magnetic field (0,1,3,5T; solenoidal, dipole)
Tissue modifications (e.g. Gd admixture for n-therapy)
Given tumour size/depth – find best beam conditions.
|% of module mark
|Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
Medical Physics exam
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The course book for the Medical physics part is , Mark Strikman, Kevork Spartalian & Milton W. Cole