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Dr Ellen Donovan


Visiting Senior Research Fellow
PhD
+44 (0)1483 689340
07 DK 04

Academic and research departments

Centre for Vision, Speech and Signal Processing (CVSSP).

Biography

My qualifications

1987
BA (Hons) Natural Sciences
University of Cambridge
1992
MSc Medical Physics
University of Aberdeen
2005
PhD
Institute of Cancer Research, University of London

Research

Research interests

Indicators of esteem

  • National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Research Training Advocate for Healthcare Scientists

My teaching

Supervision

Postgraduate research supervision

My publications

Highlights

The results in this Lancet publication are practice changing for radiotherapy for breast cancer.

IMPORT LOW trial): 5-year results from a multicentre, randomised, controlled, phase 3, non-inferiority trial’

Coles CE, Griffin CL, Kirby AM, Titley J, Agrawal RK, Alhasso A, Bhattacharya I,  Brunt A, Ciurlionis L, Chan C, Donovan EM et al and IMPORT Trialists

Lancet 390(10099) 1048-1060 2017

 

 

Journal Editor’s Pick for October 2012  and in top 10 most downloaded papers for September 2012 and October 2012

Second Cancer Incidence Risk Estimates using BEIR VII Models for Standard and Complex External Beam Radiotherapy for Early Breast Cancer’

Donovan EM, James H, Bonora M, Yarnold JR, Evans PM

Medical Physics 39 (10), 5814-24 (2012); http://dx.doi.org/10.1118/1.4748332 

Online Publication Date: 11 September 2012

 

Publications

Bartlett F, Carr K, McNair H, Locke I, Yarnold J, Kirby A, Colgan R, Donovan E, Evans P, Haviland J (2013) The UK HeartSpare Study: Randomised evaluation of voluntary deep-inspiratory breath-hold in women undergoing breast radiotherapy, Radiotherapy and Oncology 108 (2) pp. 242-247 Elsevier Ireland Ltd
Purpose To determine whether voluntary deep-inspiratory breath-hold (v-DIBH) and deep-inspiratory breath-hold with the active breathing coordinator" (ABC-DIBH) in patients undergoing left breast radiotherapy are comparable in terms of normal-tissue sparing, positional reproducibility and feasibility of delivery. Methods Following surgery for early breast cancer, patients underwent planning-CT scans in v-DIBH and ABC-DIBH. Patients were randomised to receive one technique for fractions 1-7 and the second technique for fractions 8-15 (40 Gy/15 fractions total). Daily electronic portal imaging (EPI) was performed and matched to digitally-reconstructed radiographs. Cone-beam CT (CBCT) images were acquired for 6/15 fractions and matched to planning-CT data. Population systematic (£) and random errors (Ã) were estimated. Heart, left-anterior-descending coronary artery, and lung doses were calculated. Patient comfort, radiographer satisfaction and scanning/treatment times were recorded. Within-patient comparisons between the two techniques used the paired t-test or Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Results Twenty-three patients were recruited. All completed treatment with both techniques. EPI-derived £ were d1.8 mm (v-DIBH) and d2.0 mm (ABC-DIBH) and à d2.5 mm (v-DIBH) and d2.2 mm (ABC-DIBH) (all p non-significant). CBCT-derived £ were d3.9 mm (v-DIBH) and d4.9 mm (ABC-DIBH) and à d 4.1 mm (v-DIBH) and d 3.8 mm (ABC-DIBH). There was no significant difference between techniques in terms of normal-tissue doses (all p non-significant). Patients and radiographers preferred v-DIBH (p = 0.007, p = 0.03, respectively). Scanning/treatment setup times were shorter for v-DIBH (p = 0.02, p = 0.04, respectively). Conclusions v-DIBH and ABC-DIBH are comparable in terms of positional reproducibility and normal tissue sparing. v-DIBH is preferred by patients and radiographers, takes less time to deliver, and is cheaper than ABC-DIBH. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Bartlett FR, Donovan Ellen, McNair HA, Corsini LA, Colgan RM, Evans Philip, Maynard L, Griffin C, Haviland JS, Yarnold JR, Kirby AM (2016) The UK HeartSpare Study (Stage II): Multicentre Evaluation of a Voluntary Breath-hold Technique in Patients Receiving Breast Radiotherapy, Clinical Oncology 29 (3) pp. e51-e56 Elsevier
Aims To evaluate the feasibility and heart-sparing ability of the voluntary breath-hold (VBH) technique in a multicentre setting. Materials and methods Patients were recruited from 10 UK centres. Following surgery for early left breast cancer, patients with any heart inside the 50% isodose from a standard free-breathing tangential field treatment plan underwent a second planning computed tomography (CT) scan using the VBH technique. A separate treatment plan was prepared on the VBH CT scan and used for treatment. The mean heart, left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) and lung doses were calculated. Daily electronic portal imaging (EPI) was carried out and scanning/treatment times were recorded. The primary end point was the percentage of patients achieving a reduction in mean heart dose with VBH. Population systematic (£) and random errors (Ã) were estimated. Within-patient comparisons between techniques used Wilcoxon signed-rank tests. Results In total, 101 patients were recruited during 2014. Primary end point data were available for 93 patients, 88 (95%) of whom achieved a reduction in mean heart dose with VBH. Mean cardiac doses (Gy) for free-breathing and VBH techniques, respectively, were: heart 1.8 and 1.1, LAD 12.1 and 5.4, maximum LAD 35.4 and 24.1 (all P
Bartlett F, Colgan R, Donovan E, McNair H, Carr K, Evans P, Griffin C, Locke I, Haviland J, Yarnold J, Kirby A (2014) The UK Heart Spare Study (Stage IB): Randomised comparison of a voluntary breath-hold technique and prone radiotherapy after breast conserving surgery, Radiotherapy and Oncology 114 (1) pp. 66-72 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
Purpose

To compare mean heart and left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) doses (NTDmean) and positional reproducibility in larger-breasted women receiving left breast radiotherapy using supine voluntary deep-inspiratory breath-hold (VBH) and free-breathing prone techniques.

Materials and methods

Following surgery for early breast cancer, patients with estimated breast volumes >750 cm3 underwent planning-CT scans in supine VBH and free-breathing prone positions. Radiotherapy treatment plans were prepared, and mean heart and LAD doses were calculated. Patients were randomised to receive one technique for fractions 1?7, before switching techniques for fractions 8?15 (40 Gy/15 fractions total). Daily electronic portal imaging and alternate-day cone-beam CT (CBCT) imaging were performed. The primary endpoint was the difference in mean LAD NTDmean between techniques. Population systematic (£) and random errors (Ã) were estimated. Within-patient comparisons between techniques used Wilcoxon signed-rank tests.

Results

34 patients were recruited, with complete dosimetric data available for 28. Mean heart and LAD NTDmean doses for VBH and prone treatments respectively were 0.4 and 0.7 (p

Conclusions

In larger-breasted women, supine VBH provided superior cardiac sparing and reproducibility than a free-breathing prone position.

Additional publications