Book examines difficult cases in radiation oncology

August 16, 2013, Loyola University Health System

William Small, Jr., MD, of Loyola University Medical Center is co-editor of a new book that provides an evidence-based guide to difficult cases in radiation oncology.

Radiation Oncology: Difficult Cases and Practical Management provides physicians with practical, evidence-based guidance on common clinical challenges that community physicians would normally handle without outside referral.

The book offers comparisons of approaches to difficult situations, allowing the reader to compare his or her current treatment approach to those of experts and others in the community.

Radiation Oncology is organized in seven sections corresponding to the major treatment areas of . Each section includes three cases to illustrate specific clinical challenges for which there is no clear . The case discussion includes an expert opinion on optimal management along with alternatives from a second academic expert's perspective and from a community practitioner's perspective.

Patients "frequently present with scenarios for which level I evidence is not available and a more individualized approach to each patient is warranted," the editors write in the preface. "It is in these scenarios that one must go beyond the pages of our textbooks and begin to practice the art of medicine."

Dr. Small is chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology of Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Co-editors are Tim R. Williams, MD, medical director of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Lynn Cancer Institute and Eric D. Donnelly, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

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