The Department of Radiation Oncology offers a challenging four-year program intended to prepare physicians for a highly successful career in radiation oncology. The goal of the residency program is to develop a life-long quest for learning that prepares residents to deal with the problems of today with an eye to the solutions of tomorrow. Residents will acquire a broad base of skills and knowledge in clinical radiotherapy and translational oncology, and work with the most modern techniques and equipment available.
Established in 1824 as one of the nation’s first medical schools, the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) provides the most up to date care and biomedical research available in South Carolina and the Southeast. In an era of shrinking research dollars, the University has increased its research funds by fivefold during the past eight years placing it in the upper tiers of medical schools in terms of research dollars with over $230 million in research funds in 2012.
The Hollings Cancer Center (HCC) at MUSC is among fewer than 70 cancer centers that have achieved recognition as a National Cancer Institute designated Cancer Center. It hosts the MUSC Department of Radiation Oncology in the main HCC building, with over 200,000 square feet of multidisciplinary clinics, research laboratories, conference facilities, and more. Core facilities include biostatistics support, flow cytometry and cell sorting, cell and molecular imaging, small animal imaging, tissue biorepository, gene targeting and knockout, lipidomics synythesis and analysis, cellular therapy, drug discovery and screening, and clinical trials support. HCC has over $40 million in research funding overall. U.S. News and World Report ranks the Hollings Cancer Center in the top 25% of cancer care in the U.S. for 2013-2014.
As an integral part of the Hollings Cancer Center, the department provides radiation therapy in a high-tech, multidisciplinary environment. Physicians from all the pertinent specialties see and discuss patients at disease-specific clinics and tumor boards, which meet with a genuine esprit-de-corps providing a comprehensive approach to patient management. These multidisciplinary teams and tumor boards include Breast Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Thoracic Cancer, Hematological Cancers/Lymphoma, Gastrointestinal Cancer, Genitourinary Cancer, Neurologic Cancer, Pediatric Malignancies, Melanoma and Aggressive Skin Cancer, Sarcoma, and Gynecologic Cancer. Residents also gain rare and valuable insight into the late toxicity of radiotherapy by attending our Long-term Pediatric Oncology Survivor’s Clinic.
The Department endeavors to develop and promote the most modern treatment techniques. We have active programs in stereotactic radiosurgery with GammaKnife® PerfexionTM, stereotactic body radiosurgery, fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy, total body irradiation for bone marrow transplant, high- and low-dose rate brachytherapy including MammoSite®, Contura®, and Savi® applicators for partial breast irradiation and real-time intraoperative planning for prostate seed implants. Residents also gain experience in the use of Ra-223 dichloride and Y-90 microspheres therapy. We have multiple approaches for delivering intensity modulated radiotherapy including Tomotherapy® and linac-based methods including volumetric-modulated arc therapy. We expect to have Varian TrueBeam® technology in the near future.
We have the highest expectations for the performance of our resident physicians. We support this prospect with dedicated time each morning for didactic education. Our lecture series from 8 to 9 am each day rotates between formal didactic presentations by Radiation Oncology or guest faculty, resident-led reviews, Journal Club, Radiation Biology, Clinical Physics, and peer-review chart rounds. This time is protected for the residents to ensure they receive the didactic education required of a well-rounded training program in Radiation Oncology. Resident research and training is supported financially as well, with book-funds and travel support for national and international meetings. Each resident is supplied with a desktop computer and an iPad® to facilitate the educational process and manage patient care.
Our department participates in the ERAS match program. Our ACGME ID number is 4304521092. Successful applicants for our resident training program will complete a clinical internship/preliminary year after medical school at an ACGME-approved program in Transitional Medicine, Internal Medicine, or General Surgery. The Department of Surgery at MUSC has put together an excellent preliminary year program specifically for interns interested in Radiation Oncology. Residents are expected to pass the USMLE part 3 and a background check during their internship year, before beginning their residency program in our department.
For more information on our resident training program, please contact:
Ms. Tanya Byers, Program Coordinator
Department of Radiation Oncology
169 Ashley Avenue
Charleston, SC 29425