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Newsletter

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF PHYSICISTS IN MEDICINE VOLUME 30 NO. 4

JULY/AUGUST 2005

Status of Board Reorganization

AAPM President’s Column

Howard Amols New York, NY The observant among us may have noticed that the accompanying photograph is not me. It is, instead, my mom, taken at 15,000 feet as she began her first skydive in celebration of her 80th birthday. Happy birthday, mom, and as my friend 1 Marty Weinhous commented, ‘that explains a lot’!

Hopefully you have all made plans to attend the annual meeting in Seattle, although unless you’re reading this online, my comments here on the meeting may be too late to do you any good. Be that as it may, we have another great meeting planned. Sincere thanks to the Meeting Coordination, Program, and Local Arrangements committees, plus our headquarters staff. If you’ve never been involved in planning for the annual meeting, you can only imagine how much work is required to make it a success. I won’t list individuals for fear of inadvertently omitting someone, but thanks to all. The annual meeting is one of the most important services the AAPM provides for its members educationally, professionally, and socially. Equally important, the meeting generates a substantial portion of the AAPM’s annual operating funds. A major component of the meeting and a large reason for its success, both professionally and economically, derives from the participation of our corporate affiliates and commercial exhibitors. Our physician colleagues, hospital administrators, and more importantly, patients, rely on us as medical physicists to remain abreast of (See Amols - p. 2)

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Don Frey Chairman of the Board The AAPM Board of Directors undertook a final vote to send the recommended bylaws changes to the membership. The vote was 33 in favor, one opposed, one abstention and one did not vote. The bylaws changes will be discussed at the annual business meeting and then they will go to the membership for a vote. To be accepted they must be passed by a twothirds majority of those voting. I would encourage each of you to familiarize yourself with the issues and participate in the vote.

TABLE OF CONTENTS Governance Structure Executive Dir’s. Column Leg. & Reg. Affairs Education Council Rep. Ed. & Research Fund AAPM in the News Staff Profile Report CAMPEP News Chapter News NSBP/NSHP Report New Members ACR MRI Accreditation Letter to the Editor

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p 5 p 6 p 7 p 10 p 11 p 13 p 14 p 15 p 16 p 17 p 20 p 22 p 23


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Amols

(from p. 1)

technological advancements in medical imaging and therapy physics equipment. We are expected to be the experts and we should be playing a major role in the selection, utilization, and maintenance of capital equipment in our respective hospitals. One of the best ways to maintain credentials as a technology expert is to spend time with the vendors

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and learn about their equipment. So please take advantage of these opportunities at the meeting. Visit the Technical Exhibits area, and not just to partake of the free beer and pretzels! While on the topic of the annual meeting, let me put in one last plug urging members to attend the annual business meeting (Wednesday, 5PM). Most members routinely skip this (and I’m sorry to say, not without good

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reason), but this year there will be an open discussion on amendments to the Rules proposing that the AAPM Board of Directors be reduced in size from 37 to 17 voting members. Whether you are in favor of these amendments, opposed, or (perhaps for many of you) completely ambivalent, your vote on these amendments will have a profound affect on the future of the AAPM. So please attend, listen, comment, and vote later this year when the ballots are posted online. If you want to learn more about how the AAPM Board of Directors operates, I also remind you that the board meeting (Thursday, 1-6 PM) is open to all AAPM members. Bring ‘No-Doze’ if you must, but I invite you to attend. Let me now change topics and editorialize on education. Previous newsletters have had columns from myself or others urging members to support the AAPM’s Educational Endowment Fund. Income from the fund supports fellowships, residencies, seed money for research by young investigators, and other educational activities in medical physics. In recent years donations to the fund from AAPM members have been underwhelming, to say the least. I’ve heard and read statements from more than a few AAPM members such as, ‘why should I help pay to train someone who will steal my job from me,’ or ‘why don’t we keep the supply of medical physicists low to keep salaries high’? It’s difficult to reply to comments like that but let me try. Personally, I do not consider young physicists whom

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I help train, either financially or didactically, to be competitors. They are, instead, my successors—the people who will be treating me when I get sick, and my children and grandchildren when I’m retired. If hoarding knowledge rather than passing it along to the next generation were the mantra of mankind, we’d still be living in caves and rubbing sticks together to make fire. I urge you to consider supporting the educational growth of your profession as a service and an obligation rather than as some kind of self-defeating competition. At this year’s annual meeting you will have yet another opportunity to make a donation to the AAPM’s Education Fund. You can make your contribution when you register, when you pick up your badge, or at anytime during the meeting by asking at the registration desk. We had a similar campaign last year but with little success. We need to do better this year! You can also contribute now by logging onto the AAPM Web site. From the main page click on ‘Education’ and in the left hand column under ‘Education & Research Fund,’ click on ‘Contribute to the Fund.’ While on the topic of education, let me remind you of the ABR Update that appeared in the last issue of the newsletter from the three ABR physics trustees (Bill Hendee, Bhudatt Paliwal, and Steve Thomas) in which they reported that the ABR will be raising the bar on physics education for residents in radiology and radiation oncology. In particular,

there are plans to improve the quality of physics education and to gradually raise the passing score required on the board exams. The ACR Intersociety Summer Conference will also discuss physician training at this year’s meeting and the AAPM will be represented by Steve Thomas and Brian Fowlkes. There are similar concerns about the knowledge level of medical physicists vis-a-vis ABR certification and we should expect that passing scores for certification of medical physicists will be increased in the coming years as well. I’ve long felt that the ease with which marginally qualified individuals can become certified has been a long-standing problem and a disservice to our profession and to patients. This is particularly true of the written exams. Consider the fact that typically more than half the candidates taking the oral exam for the first time either fail outright or fail conditionally. Although there are other possible explanations, this suggests to me that the written exam is too easy. I’m glad to hear of plans to address these issues in a constructive way. These plans go hand in hand with ABR’s new plan for Maintenance of Certification (MOC), which is another welcome step towards increasing the level of competency required of medical physicists. And who better than the AAPM to take the lead in promoting physics education? So yes, another plug for contributing to the AAPM’s Education Fund! Helping physicists maintain their certification, either by pro-

viding Web-based, annual meeting-based, or other opportunities for obtaining MOC credits, has to be one of the major goals of the AAPM over the coming years. This subject was discussed when I met with the Executive Committee of the ACMP at their recent annual meeting in Orlando, and this mission is something that will only benefit from increased cooperation between our two organizations. Of course MOC will be much easier for individuals who have a higher level of competency to begin with, and raising the bar on the ABR exam is a great way to start the MOC era! Raising the bar, however, is going to require that applicants be better prepared before they even take the exam. I’d like to share a recent mail exchange I had with an AAPM member who wrote: “… as AAPM president you have been very vocal in your opposition to stricter requirements for the didactic and clinical training of medical physicists… So I have to ask, what is your model of training and credentialing…I am unable to connect the dots in what you have published as president.” Here is my reply: I have never been opposed to more rigorous training. But I am opposed to making CAMPEP mandatory and am opposed to state licensing. The latter because I don’t think state governments can or will regulate the profession of medical physics better than we ourselves can. The former because I do not think a degree in

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Amols

(from p. 3)

medical physics is any better than a degree in nuclear physics, or any other hard science or engineering degree. Graduate school is for learning basic math and physics, how to think, and how to solve problems. A CAMPEP approved degree in medical physics is not superior in that regard to any of the other disciplines I’ve mentioned, and may even be inferior. I am, however, in favor of requiring a hard earned degree in a hard science from a real university, followed by structured clinical training. A CAMPEP approved residency is a fine way to do the last step, but it is not the only way and there aren’t enough programs to fill the needs anyway. Under the right conditions, being ‘mentored’ by a senior or ‘master’ medical physicist can be as good as or better than a CAMPEP approved residency (more on that below). Finally, peer-reviewed certification must be mandatory and hospitals should not get JCAHO accreditation or Medicare reimbursement for radiotherapy or radiology procedures unless they have contracted for the services of such a person. Next, and I think

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this is the key link in the chain, the board exam has to be made significantly harder, and I’m delighted to learn that the ABR is taking steps in that direction! So how can we train adequate numbers of medical physicists if I am correct in asserting that there will never be enough CAMPEP approved residency programs? Towards this end, several months ago I created an Ad Hoc Committee on Alternate Paths to Medical Physics Residency Training. The charge of this committee is to investigate the feasibility of creating something akin to the medieval guild system, or Boy Scout merit badge system, wherein CAMPEP would certify experienced physicists as mentors who would then be deemed qualified to vouch for a junior physicist having completed the equivalence of a formal clinical residency. Such a system could, I believe, solve both the financial and logistic problems of creating the required number of CAMPEP residency programs. Let’s focus our limited resources on clinical training rather than on graduate degree programs. I anxiously await the final report from this committee, and responses from CAMPEP and ABR.

And now the second installment of Just For Frustration. We begin with the answers to last month’s three fishermen problem: The smallest positive number of fish caught is 25. Diracs answer, far more clever, is –2. The first fisherman throws one fish away leaving –3 fish, takes –1 fish home leaving –2 fish in the pile, and his two partners each repeat this. This month’s problem is: Determine the height of a skyscraper with a barometer. As a student at the University of Copenhagen, Niels Bohr almost flunked out of school for giving six different answers to this question, none of which involved measuring the difference in atmospheric pressure between the ground floor and roof of the building, which was the answer his humorless and somewhat unimaginative professor was expecting. So think out of the box and come up with some of Bohr’s answers. See you all in Seattle! 1

Note: Although Marty has two strikes against him for tricking me into running for AAPM president, I still list him as a friend. ■

The 2006 Call for Nominations and Applications is available on the AAPM Web site at http://www.aapm.org/org/committees/awards_honors/index.html#nominations. Please note that the deadline to receive nominations and applications is October 15, 2005.

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A Lay Guide to the Governance Structure of the AAPM (or, why you should bother to read this article) Chris Marshall Chair of the Rules Committee The AAPM is incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation in the District of Columbia, and as such is subject to DC law. The membership, purposes and governance structure of the AAPM is described in three related documents; the Articles of Incorporation, the Bylaws, and the Rules; all of these may be found on the AAPM Web site under ‘Organization/Committee Tree.’ This article is intended as an overview of these three documents with particular emphasis on how they protect the rights of each member of the AAPM. The Articles of Incorporation represent, in effect, a formal public statement of what we are and why we exist as an organization. Their approval established the AAPM as a corporation under DC law and corporate status protects individual members who are acting on behalf of the AAPM from liabilities that they might incur if they were acting alone. They also play an important role in qualifying the AAPM as a taxexempt organization under federal law. Although the Articles can be changed by two-thirds vote of those voting members (full members and emeritus members in good standing) who actually vote, changes only take effect after they have been approved by (filed in) the District of Columbia.

The Bylaws are the main instrument through which individual AAPM members exercise control over the AAPM. The Bylaws elaborate upon, but must be consistent with, the Articles. Changes require the approval of a twothirds majority of those voting members who actually vote. Through the Bylaws members authorize the officers and the board to act on their behalf, but also determine what they can do. While changes to the Bylaws are normally proposed to the membership by the board, five or more members also have the right to propose changes. This power has been used effectively in recent years to deal with at least one issue that the board was reluctant to address. The Bylaws require an annual business meeting of the association, and all voting members have the right to attend and vote at that meeting. Changes to member dues must be approved at that meeting. Members may also make motions on any issue at that meeting, provided that this is

done in accordance with Roberts Rules of Order. This is best done by notifying the secretary in advance, but it can also be done by making a verbal motion under the “New Business” part of the agenda. Any motion introduced requires a second (an expression of support for the motion) by another member at the meeting. Under existing Rules, the board must consider any motion that is approved by majority vote at the business meeting. If they decide against any proposed action the matter must then be resolved by the membership. This mechanism has been used very effectively in the past; for example, to launch the Journal and to initiate the ACMP/ABMP. These are very important powers that help to ensure that the officers and the board remain attentive to the interest of the members. The Rules are the instrument through which the board exercises detailed control over the AAPM. The Rules elaborate upon, but must be consistent with, the Bylaws. Changes only require the approval of the board. All committees and board members have the power to propose changes to the Rules and to have these brought to vote by the board. The Rules establish detailed charges to all councils and committees and provide membership

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(See Marshall - p. 6)


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Marshall

(from p. 5)

and reporting requirements intended to ensure coordination. If you are active on a committee you should be aware of the corresponding Bylaws and Rules. A recent innovation by the HQ staff has been to provide links to these on the AAPM Web site from each committee listed under Organization/Committee Tree. The Rules also provide a framework for administering many issues. In recent years the board has introduced policies that are intended to provide staff and others with very specific instructions for carrying out their responsibilities. These represent a less formal fourth tier to the hierarchical structure described in this article, and are also accessible though the AAPM Web site. The Rules Committee has a general responsibility for managing the process of revising the Bylaws and Rules to reflect current practice, but only in response to the actions of members and the board. It is partway through a multiyear project to impose more order over the format of the Rules so that they may be more easily accessed. The division into Articles, Bylaws and Rules can be frustrating because each document must be separately checked to ensure that any given issue is dealt with appropriately. However, the versions on the Web site are separately searchable and the Rules Committee Web site has a link to a compendium of all three for single step searching. Why this matters. There is logic to the structure—powers are assigned to different constitu-

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encies—the Articles to DC, the Bylaws to the members and the Rules to the board. While you might think of the officers and board as being “in charge,” this is only because of the power that

is granted to them by the membership through the Bylaws. So in this sense you control the board and the association—if you take the time to participate and to vote. ■

Executive Director’s Column Angela Keyser College Park, MD

Educator’s Resource Guide The online Educator’s Resource Guide is now available online. The guide has been compiled by TG #115 of the Medical Physics Training of Allied Heath Professionals Committee and lists resources to be used by medical physicists in their educational duties. Members are encouraged to submit resources to be included in the list so that it can become more comprehensive and remain current. Such materials will be reviewed by the task group and, if approved, added to the guide.

Membership Renewal Process for 2005 Following established AAPM policies, memberships lapsed for those who did not pay their dues prior to the March 1 deadline. There were 334 lapsed members, which is roughly 6.8% of those invoiced. We experienced a spike in the number of lapsed members in 2004 with approximately 10% of the membership lapsing after March 1. The 2005 numbers are back to the 2002 and 2003 levels of 6-7%. The

good news is that 155 members, or approximately 46% of those lapsed, had reinstated by June 9.

Conflict of Interest Policy Remember to review the “Conflict of Interest” area of the Member Profile to self-report conflicts per the AAPM Conflict of Interest Policy. This policy states that “Individuals selected for service to the Association are required to complete a Potential Sources of Conflict of Interest form, listing relevant connections and interests that may constitute potential sources of conflict of interest within the meaning of this policy in light of the responsibilities falling to the Association.”

Interesting Statistics •The average age of AAPM Members (Note – date of birth

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is self-reported in the Membership Profile): Full Members – 47 years old Student Members – 29 years old Corresponding Members – 48 years old •The AAPM continues to maintain good e-mail addresses for roughly 94% of the AAPM membership. Approximately 4% of the addresses on file have bounced or been rejected. Another 2% of the membership lists no e-mail address in their Member Profile. •75% of AAPM members have provided a home address. While this percentage continues to improve, I encourage those who have not provided the information to go to their Member Profile and include this important information. Having this information will assist in legislative affairs issues.

Staff News Clarise Gilmore joined the AAPM staff in May as our data-

base administrator. This position was recently vacated by Nikki Williams who left the AAPM to be an entrepreneur in her own IT company. Clarise is a graduate of Old Dominion University and comes to the AAPM with several years of experience in database administration, most recently with the University of Maryland. Sharon Lehman has announced her plans to leave AAPM in mid-October. Her husband serves in the Air Force and is being transferred to the Azores at the end of the year. The Azores are a series of nine islands located 900 miles off the coast of Portugal. Sharon and her family will be living on the second largest of these islands called Terceira. Sharon joined the AAPM team in July 1998 and, among many other things, has played a key role in Executive Committee and board meeting preparations. She will be greatly missed! Part of the success of AAPM HQ operations is our ability to

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attract and retain an excellent team of high-performing professionals. The following AAPM team members have celebrated an AAPM anniversary in the first half of 2005. I want to publicly thank them and acknowledge their efforts. Jean Rice 11 years of service Nancy Vazquez 9 years of service Zailu Gao 4 years of service Cecilia Hunter 2 years of service Karen MacFarland 2 years of service Lynne Fairobent 1 year of service In this issue, I am continuing my series of HQ team profiles. Please take a moment to read the Information Services team profile in this issue. ■

Legislative and Regulatory Affairs Column Lynne Fairobent College Park, MD

The CDRH Radiological Health Program - Adapting to Current Public Health Needs The Food and Drug Administration has set a new direction for the Radiological Health Program which renews the FDA’s commitment to safeguarding the public health in this area. In May 2004, the FDA’s Center for De-

vices and Radiological Health (CDRH) began an effort to examine how their program can best adapt to current public health needs. This effort culminated in a report which outlines the key elements of the program and how their new direction will impact the most pressing public health problems in the radiological health arena and anticipate the evolution of medical radiation systems.

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Fairobent

(from p. 7)

They determined that they must shift the focus of their resources to the products and procedures with the highest risks to the public, including those that affect the greatest number of people or cause the most severe harm. There are five program areas on which the FDA will be concentrating: standards, monitoring, education, research, and program management. The benefits are that the new program will: •Align CDRH efforts with current and evolving public health needs. •Expand focus on patient and consumer protection. •Allow for a more targeted approach to regulation. •Increase information dissemination and training. •Improve coordination across the radiological health community. The complete report can be found at: The CDRH Radiological Health Program - Adapting to Current Public Health Needs at www.fda.gov/cdrh/radhlth/ initiative.html.

FDA Publishes Final Diagnostic X-ray Standard On June 10, 2005 the FDA published the amendments to the federal performance standard for diagnostic X-ray systems (21 CFR 1020.30 – 1020.33). This rule will become effective June 10, 2006 for all newly manufactured diagnostic X-ray systems. The amendments establish new requirements for both radiographic and fluoroscopic X-ray

systems. These changes to the performance standard were warranted by changes in both the technology and manner of use of fluoroscopic X-ray systems and to fully utilize the International System of Units to describe radiation-related quantities and their units when used in the performance standard. Fluoroscopic X-ray equipment manufactured after June 10, 2006 will need to include: •Displays of the duration, rate, and cumulative amount of radiation exposure patients receive. •Increased X-ray filtration (on certain types of equipment) to reduce the possibility of radiation injuries during long procedures. •Tighter controls on the size of the X-ray field to reduce the amount of radiation that falls outside the image target area. •A last-image-hold feature so that physicians can view images without continually exposing patients to radiation. The requirement for fluoroscopic X-ray systems to display information on the amount of radiation exposure a patient receives during an imaging procedure will allow physicians to reduce the exposure when possible. Remember the requirements will apply only to new systems manufactured and sold after June 10, 2006. Owners of existing X-ray systems who wish to upgrade their systems to meet the new requirements are encouraged to do so, however, not all manufacturers will be able to supply upgrades to all models of Xray systems.

The full text of the final rule can be found at: http://www.fda.gov/ cdrh/radhlth/xraystandard.html.

Correction NRC Issues Final Training and Experience Rule: 10 CFR Part 35, Medical Use of Byproduct Material – Recognition of Specialty Boards; Final Rule (70 FR 16336). In the last issue, I wrote an article about the final Nuclear Regulatory Commission rule on the training and experience requirements. In the article I stated that the certifying boards must request recognized status for all areas in which their diplomates practice. I also stated that the NRC must make a decision on granting before October 24, 2005 (i.e., prior to the expiration of 10 CFR Subpart J). This is not completely accurate. The NRC does not have any time constraints for making decisions on recognized status, although they will try to respond to requests in an expeditious manner. The point I was trying to make is that without a decision on recognized status by October 24, 2005 when subpart J expires, the alternate pathway will be the only effective path for requesting to be an Authorized Medical Physicist, Radiation Safety Officer or Authorized User in non-agreement states. To ensure that you are working with the latest and final text of Part 35, please refer to: http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/ doc-collections/cfr/part035/. ■

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Education Council Report Herb Mower Council Chair This, of course, is the issue that is always badly timed. I write this about six weeks before our summer school and annual meeting and you don’t see it in print until after the meeting. Thus, I will be telling you what I hope will be at both of these events, but will not try to pre-guess the outcomes of the various committee and subcommittee meetings. At the annual meeting we will have tried a different approach to our “Educator’s Day” under the guidance of Ken Hogstrom, chair of our Public Education Committee. Helping to educate high school and college physics faculty on the role of medical physicists and the career possibilities within our profession is a task that requires far more than can be accomplished at the annual meeting. I would encourage each of you to work with your local chapters to see about presenting informational sessions for local high schools and colleges. Having a local contact with whom the faculty and students are familiar can have a very positive effect on our profession. At the recent ACMP meeting Bill Hendee and I were discussing some of the concerns expressed by the examiners at the American Board of Radiology on the strengths and weaknesses shown in physics by the physicists, radiologists and radiation oncologists. We hope to work

with the ABR, ACMP, and our Education and Training of Medical Physicists Committee chaired by Ervin Podgorsak, and our Medical Education of Physicians Committee chaired by Richard Massoth to see what can be done to address this issue. We hope to evaluate the possibilities and have a position paper available for the 2006 AAPM Annual Meeting. If you are interested in providing input to this group, please contact any of us. June, of course, is the month to put the finishing touches on our proposed program ideas for the 2005 RSNA meeting, as well as to solidify our thoughts on the 2006 and 2007 meetings. This year we will again offer a vertical tract on IMRT on Monday afternoon, November 28th under the leadership of Jatinder Palta and Rockwell Mackie. This program was very successful in its inaugural year and we are looking forward to another great presentation this year. This year at the annual meeting we repeated the presentation on requirements for shipping radioactive materials. Presently we are

considering offering this on a biannual basis. We look forward to your feedback on this program. This year marks the 40th anniversary of our incorporation (November 10, 1965) and the adoption of our Bylaws (December 2, 1965). Gail Adams served as our president pro tem in 1958 and 1959, and as our first president in 1960. Thus we are approaching some fairly significant milestones. To this end Robert Gould and his History Committee are actively working on important aspects of our creation and development as the major association for medical physicists in the United States. I am sure that they would be pleased to receive any anecdotes or historical items you might have from our early years. I hope that you took the opportunity to sit in on some of our subcommittee and committee meetings at the annual meeting. If not, we hope that you will join us at some of them during the upcoming ASTRO and RSNA meetings.

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Education & Research Fund Award Cecilia Balazs College Park, MD Dr. Andrei Pugachev is the recipient of the first $25,000 Research Seed Grant from the AAPM’s Education & Research Fund. Dr. Pugachev is an instructor in the Department of Medical Physics, Memorial SloanKettering Cancer Center in New York City. His research interests include evaluating different hypoxia PET tracers using animal tumor models; establishing a framework for validation of hypoxia tracers using reporter-gene systems; and investigation of tem-

poral development of hypoxia in animal tumor models. Dr. Pugachev received a PhD in applied physics, with a specialization in medical physics, from Stanford University in 2002; a master of science degree with honors from the Landau Institute for theoretical physics in Moscow, Russia in 1997; and a bachelor of science degree with honors from the Moscow Institute for physics and technology in 1995. Dr. Pugachev says, “The overall goal of this project is to im-

Andrei Pugachev New York, NY In recent years, 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) has enjoyed unprecedented growth as a tumor imaging modality, becoming one of the most widespread nuclear medicine procedures. Currently, it is the only reimbursable PET imaging procedure for cancer. 18F-FDG is a glucose analog, which shows enhanced uptake in most tumors, due to the increased hexokinase activity and the elevated expression of the GLUT transporter proteins in cancer cells. Unlike normal glucose, 18F-FDG is not metabolized further after being phosphorylated by hexokinase. Instead, it can be transported out of the cell only to a limited extent

by the enzyme glucose-6-phosphatase. This reverse reaction can still be disregarded at one–two hours post injection. This feature makes 18F-FDG an ideal tracer for studying glucose transport into the cells by means of PET. Careful inspection of 18F-FDG uptake in tumors shows that intratumoral distribution of the marker can be highly nonuniform. While it is frequently feasible to attribute the low levels of activity frequently observed in the central part of the tumor to necrosis, very little is know about the nature of FDG uptake variations, e.g. hot spots observed within the live tumor tissue. If it were possible to deter-

prove our understanding of the mechanisms and processes underlying intratumoral inhomogeneities of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) uptake and to evaluate the feasibility of using these inhomogeneities to deduce any information that can be potentially used for IMRT treatment planning.” This seed funding initiative, developed by the AAPM Research Committee, is intended to provide startup funds which will hopefully lead to successful longer term project funding from the NIH or equivalent funding sources. ■

mine the most influential mechanism governing FDG uptake and show that the higher uptake of FDG is likely to be associated with a certain state of tumor microenvironment, such as hypoxia or increased cellular proliferation, the spatial information available from intratumoral FDG uptake inhomogeneities could be very useful for both patient management and radiation therapy treatment planning. However, in current clinical practice, no information from the intratumoral variations of FDG uptake is being used. The overall goal of the study proposed here is to improve our understanding of the mechanisms and processes underlying intratumoral variations of (18FFDG) uptake. Recently, we have

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Pugachev

(from p. 11)

published results of a pilot study performed on rat carcinomas grown in nude mice (A.Pugachev, et al. IJROBP 2005; 62, 545553). We have found that in tumors with a significant hypoxic fraction, the regions of increased FDG uptake always corresponded to hypoxia. Here, we are planning to apply the previously developed methodologies and analysis tools to study factors determining FDG uptake in a wide variety of human xenografts including prostate, neuroblastoma, breast, and cervical tumor models. Furthermore, we are planning to investigate the feasibility of obtaining the information on the tumor microenvironment using non-invasive FDG PET imaging methods. The specific aims of the proposed study are as follows: 1. To image the intratumoral variations of FDG uptake in several human tumor cell lines grown as xenografts in nude rats by positron emission tomography (microPET). 2. By imaging the intratumoral variations of FDG uptake with digital autoradiography and by characterizing the tumor microenvironment with fluorescent immunohistochemical techniques, we shall: A. Determine the key microenvironmental factor or factors governing the uptake of FDG in animal xenograft tumor models. The influence of the following three microenvironmental parameters will be evaluated: tumor hypoxia, cellular proliferation, and blood perfusion.

JULY/AUGUST 2005

B. Further investigate the mechanism underlying the intratumoral variations of FDG uptake by determining the degree of correlation between FDG uptake and the levels of expression of GLUT-1, GLUT-3 and hexokinases. 3. To establish the correspondence between the FDG uptake inhomogeneities as observed in microPET images with underlying variations in tumor microenvironment. Overall, this study is designed to investigate the potential of

FDG PET imaging for obtaining information on the intratumoral microenvironmental status, and it could lay a basis for incorporation of the FDG PET imaging into routine radiation treatment planning not only as a tool for tumor localization or tumor spread evaluation, but also as a valuable tool for determination of intratumoral microenvironment, which can be used to design boost doses or biologically-conformal dose distributions that can be delivered with IMRT techniques. â–

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AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

JANUARY/FEBRUARY JULY/AUGUST 2001 2005

AAPM in the News Discoveries and Breakthroughs: Bringing Medical Physics to Local TV Viewers Ben Stein Media & Gov’t Relations Div. American Institute of Physics The New York Times prints approximately 1.7 million copies of its Sunday edition. The CBS Evening News averages about 6.6 million viewers every night. Last year, however, TV pieces showing AAPM members were viewed approximately 8.3 million times on local TV news stations across the U.S. The news pieces were part of Discoveries & Breakthroughs Inside Science (DBIS), an NSFsupported science program designed for local television news. Every month, DBIS distributes a dozen 90-second news segments to many TV stations across the country. Launched by the American Institute of Physics in January 2000, the program’s goal is to raise local TV viewers’ awareness and appreciation of scientists and how they help society. Last year, through the efforts of the AAPM Executive Committee, the Public Education Council and others, AAPM officially became one of the program’s valued scientific partners. Why is the local TV news audience so important? According to recent studies from the Pew Research Center, which studies attitudes toward the press, politics and public policy, more people in the U.S. rely on local TV newscasts than any other

Video clip of AAPM Member George Starkschall in the segment “Targeting Tumors in 4D.”

medium as their primary source of news. Therefore, to truly communicate to the general public, the AIP thought it was important to reach out to this audience. (In addition, we have initiated a Spanish-language version of the program and hope to enlist the AAPM members who have volunteered for this project in future months!) Recently we produced pieces on 4D CT scans (which featured George Starkschall of MD Anderson) and new techniques for preventing radiation burns (developed by Daniel Bednarek of the University of Buffalo). These two pieces, viewed about 8.2 million times as mentioned above, were aired in such stations as KGO (San Francisco), KYW (Philadelphia), KEYE (Austin) and WTVF (Nashville). In the last 12 months we produced two additional pieces suggested by AAPM members: software that checks radiographic images for lung nodules (recommended by

Ehsan Samei, the 2004 AAPM meeting program co-chair) and image-guided radiation therapy (Gary Ezzell, the other 2004 meeting co-chair, provided valuable guidance on that one). An additional piece on 64-slice CT scans mentions that it was developed in part by medical physicists. About a dozen other stories in the past year touch upon related topics in radiology and dosimetry. All combined, these recent stories have been viewed 42 million times by TV watchers across the nation, according to Nielsen Media Research. If you’ve never seen a TV news piece entitled “Discoveries & Breakthroughs,” there’s a good reason. TV stations incorporate the segments into their newscasts as seamlessly as they can. Therefore, the stations use their own correspondents to narrate the scripts. The pieces are made to look like a regular part of the newscast. Therefore, if your lo-

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(See Stein - p. 14)


AAPM NEWSLETTER

Stein

JULY/AUGUST 2005

(from p. 13)

Staff Profile Report

cal TV station has aired the programs, you may have seen DBIS pieces without even realizing it. While many other syndicated newsfeeds exist, DBIS may be truly unique in the local television world as each topic is peer reviewed! We obtain story ideas from sources such as meeting programs, including the AAPM’s. Before we approve production on a story idea, an independent outside expert must verify for us that it is a worthwhile topic for the program to feature. Many AAPM members have checked out numerous story ideas, and the program has been greatly improved as a result. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please visit the DBIS Web site at http:// www.aip.org/dbis or www.ivan hoe.com/science. The site includes some recent videos that you can watch. In addition, we are working to make all of our past medical physics videos going back to 2000 available to all AAPM members. Also, you are welcome to contact me at bstein@aip.org and AIP Senior Science Editor Emilie Lorditch elorditc@aip.org for any feedback or ideas for the program. ■

AAPM HQ Team…at your service!

HQ IS team members (l to r) Michael Woodward, Zailu Gao, Farhanna Khan, Clarise Gilmore, and Catherine Murashchyk.

Angela Keyser AAPM Executive Director The AAPM’s electronic presence has grown at a rapid rate in the last 10 years. The AAPM has an Information Services team of five who are hard at work in support of this effort. Although their valuable work is often behind the scenes, the IS team plays a vital role in all HQ service areas. Michael Woodward joined the staff in October 1996 as internet services manager. As the AAPM’s first Webmaster, Michael worked closely with the newly formed Electronic Media Coordinating Committee to develop AAPM’s Web presence. Michael was key in the development of the AAPM Web site, specifically the Online Member Directory and Member Profile, the Annual Meeting Online Submission (AMOS) System and the

organizational pages known as the Committee Tree. With the reorganization of the IS Department in 1998, Michael was promoted to director of Information Services. Zailu Gao joined the IS team in March 2001 as an applications developer. Zailu is responsible for most of the e-commerce areas of the AAPM Web site including Online Dues Payments and Summer School Registration. Zailu is also a key player in the abstract submission process, maintaining and improving the engine used to convert uploaded documents into PDF. In acknowledgement of his ability to handle multiple development tasks simultaneously without close supervision, Zailu was promoted to senior applications developer at the end of 2003 and is responsible for the design and implementation of new and existing database programs.

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AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

Farhana Khan started with AAPM in May 1998 as a temporary staff person. After graduating in 1999, Farhana was hired full time to gear up for the AAPM’s management of the Chicago 2000 World Congress. After the World Congress, Farhana was named as AAPM’s Webmistress. Farhana is responsible for Web site and e-mail services for the AAPM and a number of other sites hosted by the AAPM. She is currently working on a major reorganization and redesign of the AAPM Web site. Clarise Gilmore, AAPM’s database administrator, is the newest member of the IS team. She joined the staff in May of this year and handles all technical matters related to the association’s databases as well as fulfillment of mailing list orders. Catherine Murashchyk came on board in September of 2002 as an applications developer. Catherine is responsible for design and implementation of new and existing database programs. She has developed an online tracking system for the Executive Committee to help manage the ever-increasing responsibilities of leadership, as well as several applications used by the HQ staff for process automation. She is currently developing an Online Educator’s Resource Guide for use by AAPM members. Coming next issue….group profile of the AAPM Accounting ■ team.

News from CAMPEP Brenda Clark CAMPEP President A longtime accredited residency program has recently been reaccredited for the second time. Congratulations to: Medical Physics Residency Program in Radiation Oncology University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455 Director: Bruce J. Gerbi Still on the topic of residency training, don’t forget the AAPM Annual Meeting’s Education Council Symposium scheduled for Sunday, July 24, 9:30-11:00AM. The session is dedicated to Physics Residency Programs and will focus on accreditation. The Residency Program Review Committee members are also busy with two new program applications, both of which are under preliminary review. A third new application has undergone the complete process and is awaiting final approval from the CAMPEP Board. There are also four graduate programs in the process of being reviewed, two for reaccreditation and two which are new applications. To give you an understanding of why this review sometimes takes such a long time, consider this:

When we attempted to schedule one of these site visits at the beginning of May, we found that the earliest date that all members of the site review team, as well as the appropriate program faculty, were available would be nearly four months away. Much of this delay is caused by summer vacations and meetings, but part of the reason is that a relatively large number of people are involved, all of whom are busy without even considering their CAMPEP activities. The Continuing Education group has recently developed a list of criteria to determine whether a program is appropriate for accreditation. According to these new criteria, whether a continuing education program may be accredited or not depends only on it’s content and targeted audience. Take a look at the list on the Web site and let us know if it achieves its objective and clarifies the situation. The latest news on the software is that Lisa Rose Sullivan and Michael Woodward are having weekly meetings with the database developers who are in the final stages of program testing and have promised “final” delivery of the application process by mid-June. Stay tuned!

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AAPM NEWSLETTER

JULY/AUGUST 2005

Chapter News Southern California Chapter Gives Norm Baily Awards Steve Goetsch Chapter Education Chair The 11th Annual Norm Baily Student Awards were given at the Southern California Chapter Meeting held at UCLA in Los Angeles on June 2, 2005. The winners included Nicole Detorie (daughter of AAPM Member Nick Detorie), advised by Tim Solberg and Magnus Dahlbom, whose talk was “Image Noise in Prospectively Respiratory Gated PET”; Adam Kesner (advisor Dan Silverman) who spoke on “Semi-Automated Analysis of Dynamic MicroPET Data Acquired for Radiodosimetry Determination”; and Stephen Sorensen (advisor Tim Solberg) whose topic was “Image Guided Radiosurgery Using Mobile kV Cone Beam CT.” All three students are enrolled in the UCLA Biomedical Physics Graduate Program. A turnaway crowd of 50 people attended the dinner meeting. Each student received a certificate from Chapter President Chris Cagnon and Education Chair Steve Goetsch along with an award of $500. These awards are given in memory of the late Professor Norm Baily of the University of California. ■

SCC members pose with the 2005 Norm Baily Award winners. Pictured are (l to r): Nicole Detorie, Stephen Sorensen, Steve Goetsch, Chris Cagnon and Adam Kesner. Photograph courtesy of SCC President-elect Marianne Plunkett.

Upstate New York Harish K Malhotra Chapter President-elect The Upstate New York Chapter of the AAPM held its semiannual meeting at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY on May 2, 2005. The program featured two sessions covering scientific as well as professional aspects of the medical physics profession. A total of seven scientific talks were presented. From the Toshiba Stroke Research Center in Buffalo, three students described their research. Hussain Rangawalla talked about various neurovascular phantoms and their applications in diagnostic radiology. Girijesh Yadava described the total-system generalized MTF and GDQE of an X-ray image intensifier vs. a microangiographic system. Sebastian Schaefer presented the results of an automatic 2D motion correction algorithm in fetal MRI data

sets. Tarun Podder of Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester presented his group’s results on measurement and analysis of in vivo force, torque, and motion of surgical needles during prostate brachytherapy. Three students affiliated with the Department of Radiation Medicine at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo gave talks on their research projects. George Cernica described the consequences to Gamma Knife image registration when the fiducial box is misaligned with the axis of the CT/ MR scanner. Imran Khan talked about the dosimetric characterization of small circular electron fields using Monte Carlo technique. And finally, Moonseong Oh presented his results on dose delivery inaccuracy resulting from the incomplete scatter environment in HDR intraoperative brachytherapy. The latter part of the meeting was devoted to the professional aspects of the medical physicist.

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AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

Roger Oskvig, MD of Strong Memorial Hospital talked about the importance of credentialing for licensed professionals with special emphasis on the physician credentialing procedure at Strong Memorial Hospital. Bob Pizzutiello from Upstate Medical Physics in Victor, NY described the practical and professional issues of a medical physicist’s career in NY State subsequent to the passing of the medical physics licensure bill. Invited speaker Ivan Brezovich, PhD from the University of Alabama, Birmingham discussed independent billing for medical physics activities. The professional session talks were met with plenty of interest and discussion from the attendees. The next chapter meeting will be held in the fall of 2005. The highlight of this meeting will be the presentation of the Upstate NY Chapter’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Medical Physics. By convention, this year the award will be given to a medical physicist having a distinguished career in radiation therapy physics. As in the past, this meeting will be open to nonmembers, as well. Details of the meeting will be available shortly at www. unyaapm.org. ■

NSBP/NSHP Conference Report National Society for Black Physicists and National Society for Hispanic Physicists Christopher Njeh, Paul Guèye, & Steven Avery Symposium Co-chairs The subspecialty of medical physics was introduced to the NSBP/NSHP Annual Meeting for the first time in 2004 (AAPM Newsletter, vol. 29, p. 12, May/ June 2004). The session was a success and hence the Medical Physics Section (MPS) was formed. The goals of the MPS of the NSBP are: to promote the field of medical physics to the minority population, provide new opportunities for under-represented scientists, in particular, the African American community, to attract and increase the participation of the minority population in this field, and to establish a national network of minority medical physicists. In addition, the MPS aims to provide mentorship to young physicists who need guidance to develop a career in medical physics. Following the success of the 2004 session, the MPS was allotted two plenary sessions in the morning and two parallel sessions in the afternoon at the Joint 2005 NSBP/NSHP Annual Meeting, held February 16-19 in Orlando, Florida. This year the objective was to educate the physics community on the diversified role of medical physicists and to bring to their attention the various job opportunities available to them (note that a recruiter from the National

Dr. Christopher Njeh

Regulatory Commission attended). To achieve these goals, distinguished physicists from different areas of medical physics were invited. The plenary speakers included Dr. Donald Frey (chairman of the board, AAPM), Dr. Marlene Mcketty (chief medical physicist, Howard University), Dr. Andries Schreuder (director of medical physics, Midwest Proton Radiotherapy Institute) and Dr. Cari Borras (former chair of the International Organization of Medical Physicists). Dr. Christopher Njeh (California State University, Fresno) cochaired the symposium with Drs. Paul Guèye (Hampton University) and Steven Avery (University of Pennsylvania). Dr Njeh started the morning session with a quick introduction to medical physics, including a brief overview of diagnostic physics, therapeutic physics, nuclear medicine and radiation protection. Dr. Frey gave a scintillating talk entitled

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(See Njeh - p. 19)


AAPM NEWSLETTER

JULY/AUGUST 2005

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AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

Njeh

(from p. 17)

“The role of medical physicist in modern multi-slice CT.” This presentation was followed by Dr. Marlene McKetty’s talk entitled “Aspects of Medical Physics in today’s work environment.” Dr McKetty summarized the various duties of a clinical physicist, including duties as a radiation safety officer, educator and researcher. She included preliminary results on a study evaluating breast cancer incidence within the African American community in the Washington, DC area. Dr. McKetty also demonstrated the multi-disciplinary aspect of medical physics research. For example, she is working on a project that involves mammography, thermal imaging, scintimammography and genetic testing. Dr. Schreuder presented a talk entitled “An overview and future perspectives on hadron therapy.” He identified protons, neutrons, pi-mesons and a few charged atoms (ions) such as helium, carbon and oxygen as the hadrons used in modern day cancer treatment. This was an exciting presentation that highlighted various areas for research and development. Dr. Cari Borras brought an international flavor to the day’s presentation. She introduced the history of medical physics, pointing out that the first medical physics association, the Hospital Physicist Association, was founded in the UK in 1919, the AAPM in 1958 and the IOMP in 1963. Today, IOMP represents over

16,000 medical physicists worldwide and 74 affiliated national member organizations.

Dr. Cari Borras

The first afternoon session was dedicated to career development in medical physics. Dr. Albin Gonzalez gave a presentation on the challenges and rewards of a clinical medical physicist, providing an exciting overview of what typical day-to-day duties of a clinical physicist include. Dr. Avery presented a talk on research in medical physics on behalf of Dr. Guèye. He highlighted how research in nuclear physics, computer science and other branches of physics are helping to push the frontier of medicine. The second afternoon session was filled with cutting edge research presentations primarily from students. Mr. Thomas Cudjoe from the Center for Advanced Medical Instrumentation (CAMI) at Hampton University presented the latest development on in vivo dosimetry of Brachytherapy using scintillating fibers. Ms. Jennifer Velez, also from CAMI, presented a study that discusses the possibility of using a dedicated gamma camera for breast cancer localization and diagnosis. Ms. Nnenna Onumah presented a GEANT4 Monte

JANUARY/FEBRUARY JULY/AUGUST 2001 2005

Carlo simulation to validate Brachytherapy source uniformity using scintillation fiber based detectors. There were presentations from other students that included Michael Epps, Carlos Velasco and Quanni Jenkins from that same group. For further information on all of this cutting edge research, contact Dr. Paul Guèye gueye@jlab.org. The 2006 NSBP/NSHP Annual Meeting will be held in San Jose in February. One of the keynote speakers will be Dr. Roderick Pettigrew, director of the National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering at the National Institute of Health. We are encouraging more medical physicists to participate in this upcoming meeting (a call for abstract submissions will be announced soon). MPS also needs more established clinical and research physicists to act as mentors for our young medical physicists. For further information about MPS contact either Chris Njeh njehch@samc.com, Paul Guèye gueye@jlab.org or Steve Avery avery@xrt.upenn.edu. ■ .

IOMP’s 14th International Conference of Medical Physics Nuremberg, Germany September 14–17, 2005 Register now on www.ICMP2005.org!

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AAPM NEWSLETTER

JULY/AUGUST 2005

New Members The following is a list of AAPM ‘Change of Status’ and ‘New Members’ from February – May 2005.

Change of Status Full Tonya A. Bernhardt Oak Ridge, TN Chih-Yao (Roger) Cheng San Antonio, TX Carlos Esquivel San Antonio, TX Azita E. Gilardi Tarzana, CA Scott C. Hunter Ann Arbor, MI Hongyu Jiang Little Rock, AR Yongbok Kim San Francisco, CA Anand Krishnamurthy Milwaukee, WI Geetha Menon Calgary, AB CANADA Premavathy Rassiah San Antonio, TX Mohamed A. Reda Tacoma, WA Tapash K. Roy Wheeling, WV Lakshmi Santanam San Jose, CA Charles E. Schroeder Winnipeg, MB CANADA Alasdair M. Syme Edmonton, AB CANADA

Junior Jason Belec Gatineau, QC CANADA Aurelian Belecciu Novi, MI Saad L. Bennouna Miami, FL Goldie M. Bodiker Spencerville, OH Christina Ioannou Christou Greenville, NC Weiliang Du Richmond, VA Vicky W. Huang Surrey, BC CANADA

New Members

Yuri Ishihara Boston, MA Si Young Jang Houston, TX Huaying Ji Washington, DC Dennis J. Kehoe Flushing, MI Petra Knappe Nuernberg GERMANY Iacovos S. Kyprianou Rockville, MD Iuliana D. Lazea Richmond, VA Etienne Lessard San Francisco, CA Seng-Boh G. Lim Vancouver, BC CANADA Ruiguo Liu Lecanto, FL Rajesh Manoharan Peoria, IL Aaron D. Odom Lexington, KY Gabrielle M. Rumley-Smith Greensboro, NC Maria Rybak Cleveland, OH John P. Shanahan Akron, OH Chante L. Singleton Savannah, GA Jack H. Towery III Ogden, UT Luke D. Walker Attamonte Springs, FL Yizhen Wang Montreal, QC CANADA Brad J. Warkentin Edmonton, AB CANADA Matthew J. White Ballwin, MO Conrad F. Yuen Winnipeg, MB CANADA Jeananne M. Zink Hilliard, OH

Corresponding Jino Bak Seoul REPUBLIC OF KOREA Andre L. Dekker Maastricht NETHERLANDS Tarek El-Kaissi Woden AUSTRALIA Robert Elfrink Helmond NETHERLANDS Masahiro Maeda Tokyo JAPAN

Full Naseer Ahmed Sackville, NB CANADA Adil S. Akhtar Rochester, MN Steven J. Amzler Smithtown, NY Fujio Araki Kuhonji Kumamoto JAPAN William J. Aubin Salt Lake City, UT Ase M. Ballangrud-Popovic New York, NY Anita Berndt Winnipeg, MB CANADA Lisa M. Bosworth Boise, ID Joseph A. Both Miami, FL Ajit Brindhaban Sulaibikhat KUWAIT Chin-Tu Chen Chicago, IL Edward DiBella Salt Lake City, UT Frank F. Dong Waukesha, WI Jose Luis Dumont Tampa, FL Neb Duric Detroit, MI Georges El Fakhri Boston, MA Stewart D. Gaede London, ON CANADA

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Tharmar Ganesh Delhi INDIA Pierre Goulet Montreal, QC CANADA Simeon P. Hodges Westerville, OH Wen C. Hsi Bloomington, IN Ira J. Kalet Seattle, WA Peter J. Karp Decatur, AL Thomas A. Kasza Brighton, MI William G. Keough Boise, ID Gary S. Keyes Memphis, TN Minsun Kim York, NY Jun Lin Flanders, NJ Nikolas Marinos Athens GREECE Paul E. Mason Lafayette, IN Parinaz Massoumzadeh St. Louis, MO Edward J. Miller Atlanta, GA Chapple W. Musslewhite Arlington, TX Lussia N. Nedialkova Nepean, ON CANADA Malgorzata Niedbala Ottawa, ON CANADA Bahadir Ozus San Antonio, TX Dharanirajan Rajendran Bakersfield, CA William R. Ross Scotia, NY Gerd Schenk Passau GERMANY Gregory C. Sharp Boston, MA Jasjit S. Suri Westminster, CO Le-Xuan Thai Hillsborough, NC


AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

Floyd H. Tuley Jr. Provo, UT Henry Wagner Jr. Hershey, PA Didier Wdowczyk Reims FRANCE Xiong Wei Houston, TX Harriet M. Wells Kennesaw, GA Travis L. White Alpharetta, GA Dee H. Wu Oklahoma City, OK Li Xiong Boston, MA Eric Yeh Los Angeles, CA Susan Zhang Vancouver, BC CANADA

Haisen Li Gainesville, FL Jubei Liu St. Louis, MO Nadia Octave Paris FRANCE Habeeb H. Saleh Baltimore, MD Caijun Sun Weston, FL Mei Sun Baltimore, MD Yong Heng Tay Singapore SINGAPORE Erik J. Tryggestad Baltimore, MD Frank Y. Xia Washington, DC Hong F. Xiang Boston, MA

Junior

Student

Melpo A. Agathocleous Larnaca, CYPRUS Mukhtar M. Alshanqity Seddah SAUDI ARABIA Caleb G. Beck Austin, TX Sean L. Berry York, NY Jason R. Cezeaux Houston, TX Guang-Pei Chen Milwaukee, WI Dharmin D. Desai Oak Ridge, TN Chad M. Dillon Alpharetta, GA Kai Dou Lexington, KY Karen Episcopia West Hempstead, NY Ye Feng Waldorf, MD Christopher Fox Gainesville, FL Song Gao Houston, TX Michael S. Glaser Alpharetta, GA Craig A. Goldberg Philadelphia, PA Kranthi K. Kandagatla Meridian, MS Ghyslain Leclerc Sherbrooke, QC CANADA

Rana T. Alkhayyat Sterling Heights, MI Bishwa K. Aryal Toledo, OH Curtis H. Baker Lexington, KY David L. Barbee Madison, WI Stephen M. Beach Madison, WI Michael O. Bligh Houston, TX Minsong Cao West Lafayette, IN Hua Hsuan Chen San Antonio, TX Scott L. Coven Charlottesville, VA Julie C. DeAnna Strongsville, OH Sachin Dixit Dayton, OH Charles W. Dodge Detroit, MI Hang Dong Windsor, ON CANADA Justin L. Ducote Irvine, CA Srividya Duvvuri Reno, NV Tyler S. Fisher San Diego, CA Eric A. Frederick Melrose, MA

Masab H. Garada Urbana, IL Tobias Gauer Hamburg GERMANY Alonso N. Gutierrez Madison, WI David J. Halverson Minneapolis, MN Taejin Hwang Rochester Hills, MI Brian E. Kanagaki Charlottesville, VA Murshed M. Khadija Maumee, OH Bernadette L. Kline Tewksbury, MA Matthew D. Kolar Cleveland, OH Lindsay W. Launius Atlanta, GA Robert P. Laureckas Darien, IL Christine C. Lee Conley, GA Shuai Leng Madison, WI Dan Li Stony Brook, NY Rong Ding Li Lasalle, QC CANADA Danhong Li Guilderland Center, NY Chunhui Luo Sacramento, CA Meridith MacKnight Lakeville, MA Joseph J. Mahoney Saginaw, TX Michael A. Meltsner Madison, WI Ante Mestrovic Vancouver, BC CANADA Venkata K. Mogatadakala Houston, TX Tara T. Monajemi edmonton, AB CANADA Malcolm D. Murray San Antonio, TX Kenji Myint Kanata, ON CANADA Nolan M. Kirk Oklahoma, OK Thai-Binh Nguyen Hochimiuh VIET NAM Abilio Pacheco Hialeah, FL

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David Pearson Toledo, OH Heather M. Pickett Lafayette, IN Aditi Piplani Cleveland, OH Julianne M. Pollard Los Angeles, CA Aziz H. Poonawalla Houston, TX Caleb I. Price Marietta, GA Maria A. Rangel Baltazar Calgary, AB CANADA Zahra Rejaee Andover, MA Brandon K. Rice Gainesville, FL Anna Sardo Torino ITALY Arman Sarfehnia Montreal, QC CANADA Rebecca M. Seibert Knoxville, TN Nikul S. Sheth Gainesville, FL Kiranjit K. Singh Woodbridge, NJ Elizabeth M. Smith Madison, WI Mahalakshmi Srinivasan Westland, MI Atchar Sudhyadhom Gainesville, FL Joon Young Suk Montreal, QC CANADA Philip M. Tchou Ann Arbor, MI Tejas P. Telivala Stony Brook, NY Peter J. Thirunelliparambil Toledo, OH Elizabeth A. Verheggen Zionsville, PA Christopher J. Williamson Ellijay, GA Suzanne T. Witt Madison, WI Huanjin Wu Winnipeg, MB CANADA Pui Kuen Yuen Flushing, NY Jian Zhang Chapel Hill, NC Dandan Zheng â– Davis, CA


AAPM NEWSLETTER

JULY/AUGUST 2005

ACR MRI Accreditation Frequently Asked Questions for Medical Physicists Priscilla F. Butler, M.S. Sen. Dir., ACR Breast Imaging Accreditation Programs Does your facility need help applying for ACR accreditation? Do you have a question about the ACR Diagnostic Modality Accreditation Program? Check out the ACR’s Web site at www.acr.org; click “Accreditation,” then scroll down to the modality program. You can also call the Diagnostic Modality Accreditation Information Line at (800) 770-0145. In each issue of this newsletter, I’ll present questions of particular importance for medical physicists.

Q. What does the MRI Accreditation Program evaluate? A. The program is designed to be educational in nature, and it evaluates qualifications of personnel, equipment performance, effectiveness of quality control measures, and quality of clinical images. It is believed that these are the primary factors that impact the quality of clinical images and the quality of patient care.

Q. What is the cost of MRI accreditation?

of the 2004 MRI Quality Control Manual and they can also be found on the ACR Web site.

A. The first magnet costs $2,100. Each additional magnet in the same radiology group costs $2,000 if located at the same geographic address.

Q. Does the ACR accredit 3.0 Tesla magnets? If so, are the pass/fail criteria the same?

Q. Does the ACR require a MRI facility to have a qualified medical physicist or MR scientist perform an annual survey on their magnet in order to be accredited? A. This is an important recent change to the MR Accreditation Program. Starting July 1, sites applying for MRI accreditation must submit an annual MRI System Performance Evaluation performed by a qualified medical physicist or MR scientist. In addition, sites must submit copies of their weekly onsite QC data for the most recent quarter. The QC forms are on pages 64-66

A. Starting July 1, the ACR will be accepting MRI Accreditation applications for 3.0 Tesla magnets. In order to accurately measure the performance of these units, two of the physics tests performed for ACR accreditation will have different pass/fail criteria for 3.0 Tesla units. For the low contrast object detectability (LCOD) the required number of total spokes for a 3.0 Tesla magnet is equal to or greater than 37. For the image intensity uniformity, the required percent integral uniformity (PIU) for a 3.0 Tesla magnet is equal to or greater than 82%.

2005 RDCE

Need Continuing Education Credits? Earn your medical physics continuing education credits online through the

AAPM Remotely Directed Continuing Education Program Answering 8 of the 10 questions will provide you with one Medical Physics Continuing Education Credit (MPCEC). The results of your passing scores will be forwarded to the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Education Programs (CAMPEP). You will receive a summary of your MPCECs earned through the RDCE program at the end of the year from CAMPEP. Member Registration Fee: $30

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AAPM NEWSLETTER AAPM NEWSLETTER

JANUARY/FEBRUARY JULY/AUGUST 2001 2005

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Letter to the Editor From Stone Age to Space Age – Economic Rules are the Same Jahangir Satti, PhD Stockton, CA jsatti@chw.edu With reference to Dr. Brezovich’s letter to the editor: It appears that RSNA and ASTRO want medical physicists to grow whereas AAPM tries to limit their growth. It reminded me of a famous incidence in Pakistani tribal areas in the 1970s. One bureaucrat (locally known as Deputy Commissioner or DC)

was appointed in a tribal area. He was briefed that his only mission was to maintain peace. He was also told that tribal chiefs do not want any kind of progress so there is no need to push for it. Within a few days of his arrival to his new position the DC received a delegation of tribal elders. The tribe handed over half a million rupees (about $8,000) to the DC and requested him to use this sum to establish a primary school in the village of Ojna. The DC was impressed as well as surprised by this gesture. He heard stories of tribes being resistant to education. Within a month the DC received another tribal delegation who offered

about $10,000 to establish a female school in the village of Basi. When the projects were finally announced a war broke out between tribes. An inquiry was set up. It was found that the first delegation donated money to the government to establish a school in their opponent’s area. When the Ojna tribal chief came to know about this conspiracy, he donated money to open a school in the opponent Basi area. The objective was when people in the enemy tribe get educated, they will revolt against exploitation, private jails and other forms of slavery. The schools were never built. Coincidently, all the donated money was from drug trade. ■

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AAPM NEWSLETTER

JULY/AUGUST 2005

WIMP Annual Meeting Announcement Mark your calendar for the Winter Institute of Medical Physics, 2006 to be held at the Holiday Inn Summit County, Frisco, Colorado from February 11–15. For further details see the WIMP Web site at www.utmem.edu/WIMP or contact Ray Tanner, director, at rltanner@utmem.edu, or Marc Kessler, program coordinator, at mkessler@umich.edu. This is the one meeting where everyone listens to your questions and offers practical suggestions to improve your clinical practice and scientific understanding of medical physics. The Winter Institute of Medical Physics is now over 25 years in the running and seems to improve each year. It offers outstanding visiting speakers as well as presentations by all participants. An important part of the meeting is the opportunity to ski with other physicists from around the country, making useful contacts and lasting friendships.

AAPM NEWSLETTER Editor Allan F. deGuzman

Managing Editor Susan deGuzman Editorial Board

Arthur Boyer, Nicholas Detorie, Kenneth Ekstrand, Geoffrey Ibbott, C. Clifton Ling

Please send submissions (with pictures when possible) to the editors at: e-mail: deguzman@wfubmc.edu or sdeguzman@triad.rr.com (336)773-0537 Phone (336)713-6565 Fax 2340 Westover Drive, Winston-Salem, NC 27103 The AAPM Newsletter is printed bi-monthly. Next Issue: September/October 2005 Postmark Date: September 15 Submission Deadline: August 15, 2005

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF PHYSICISTS IN MEDICINE

One Physics Ellipse College Park, Maryland 20740-3846 (301)209-3350 Phone (301)209-0862 Fax e-mail: aapm@aapm.org http://www.aapm.org

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AAPM Newsletter July/August 2005 Vol. 30 No. 4  

AAPM Newsletter July/August 2005 Vol. 30 No. 4  

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