A191: The use of a comprehensive low fibre diet sheet to reduce the number of radiotherapy CT planning scan attempts for patients receiving radical radiotherapy to the prostate
1New Cross, Wolverhampton, UK
Patients receiving radical radiotherapy to the prostate are required to have a bowel volume of 4cm or less for their radiotherapy CT planning scan to reduce variation during treatment. This is difficult to achieve in all patients and some require numerous attempts before their bowel volume is correct which impacts heavily on the CT planning workload.
Due to limited department facilities, the use of daily microenemas is not possible therefore patients are advised to follow a low fibre diet and take daily laxatives. A comprehensive low fibre diet information sheet was created and trialled on a group of patients to investigate if its use could reduce the number of attempts.
- 24 patients were given a low fibre diet sheet to follow 1 week prior to their CT planning scan, alongside taking a laxative (Group A)
- Patients were educated about following a low fibre diet and the importance of bowel preparation
- The number of CT scan attempts and bowel volume were recorded for Group A and compared to a control group (Group B)
- Patients also completed a service evaluation questionnaire
74% of patients in Group A were successfully scanned within 2 attempts compared with 52% in Group B, t test performed not significant (p=0.312)
100% of patients found the low fibre diet sheet easy to follow and only 10% found it affected their daily life
79% of Group A found the clear explanation of the diet useful and 58% preferred an additional clinic appointment for this
Although clearly not statistically significant there is a trend towards a benefit of the dietary advice that is consistent with our subjective assessment of their usefulness. Whilst completing the trial, however, the importance of giving patients enough support and guidance has been highlighted. Our department is now considering the need of a prostate specialist radiographer.