Online course

Upper GI: Technical and clinical challenges for radiation oncologists

The target group consists of radiation oncologists, physicists and radiation therapists (RTTs) who are interested to learn and improve their knowledge on optimal radiation oncology treatment modalities in upper GI malignancies following the clinical and radiological basics of oncological approach beside to the main radiotherapy steps: indication, prescription, delineation, planning, IGRT and outcome evaluation.

Course director

Vincenzo Valentini, Radiation Oncologist, Università Cattolica S.Cuore, Rome (IT) 


  • William Allum, Surgeon, The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, London (UK)
  • Francesco Cellini, Radiation Oncologist, Universita’ Cattolica S. Cuore, Rome ( IT)
  • Oscar Matzinger, Radiation Oncologist, Hôpital Riviera – Providence, Vevey (CH)  
  • Alexander Quaas, Pathologist, Universitätsklinikum Köln, Köln (DE)
  • Angela Riddell, Radiologist, The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, London (UK)
  • Hanneke van Laarhoven, Medical Oncologist, Academisch Medisch Centrum Universiteit van Amsterdam, Amsterdam (NL)
  • Dirk Verellen , Physicist, Iridium Kankernetwerk Antwerpen,  Antwerpen( BE)
  • Marcel Verheij, Radiation Oncologist, Radboudumc Nijmegen, Nijmegen (NL)
  • Lisa Wiersema, Radiation Therapist, Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam (NL)

The improvement of technology opportunities in radiation oncology challenges the role of radiotherapy in many tumour sites. Upper GI tumours share a very unfavourable prognosis and in the meantime they could benefit from technology innovation. 

The aim of the course is to support an interactive educational environment by peer review of each step of radiation therapy practice (indication, prescription, delineation, planning, IGRT, outcome evaluation) according to the modern available technologies and knowledge while taking care of the clinician, physicist and RTT perspectives.

Specialists of different disciplines will support the radiation oncology audience in understanding the clinical needs, anatomic and pathologic details, and the therapeutic achievements needed to optimise radiation oncology knowledge.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, for each upper GI tumour site (oesophagusl, gastroesophageal junction, stomach, biliar tract, hepatocellular carcinoma, pancreas), participants should be able to practice:

• Proper indication for radiation therapy in a multidisciplinary perspective

• Appropriate prescription 

• Tailored delineation according to tumour location and stage

• Dose distribution optimisation and comparison

• Optimal use of available IGRT technologies

• Proper monitoring of tumour response and control.

Course Content

Session 1: Toracic Esophagus

Lectures on imaging based staging and state of art of pathological anatomy, surgery, medical oncology, clinical indications to radiation oncology, technical issues of radiation oncology will be provided.

Session 2: Gastro-esophageal junction (GEJ)

Lectures on state of art of pathological anatomy, molecular issues and physiopathology; imaging based staging and radiological anatomy; principles of delineation for the most relevant nodal regions related to GEJ presentations; will be provided.

Session 3: Delineation (FALCON session) + Video description of surgical procedure

Small group activity will be addressed. A tutored small working group target delineation and lymph-nodal areas contouring exercise for a clinical case will be performed. A video on surgical procedure highlighting the key surgical steps to have a better understanding of the local anatomy will be commented on by a surgeon. Each participant will attend both the small group activity

Session 4: Gastro-esophageal junction

Lectures on state of art of surgery, medical oncology, clinical indications to radiation oncology, technical issues of radiation oncology (target volumes delineation by primary site and tecniques)

Session 5: In room imaging guided radiotherapy 

Drill and practice exercises in small working groups on how to determine PTV margin, and IGRT by portal imaging and CT cone beam will favour discussion on daily dose delivery issues.

Session 6: Gastric

Take-home messages lectures about incidence rates for local recurrence; imaging based staging and radiological anatomy; surgery, medical oncology, clinical indications and technical issues of radiation oncology

Session 7: Refresh Lectures

Preoperative approach to Gastric cancer; SBRT for pancreatic cancer; Long course Radiotherapy for pancreatic cancer; HCC; Intrahepatic bliar tract cancer; Extrahepatic bliar tract cancer; Cervical Esophageal cancer; Ongoing trials


Before commencing this course, participants should have practiced upper GI cancer: 

• Tumour board discussion

• Delineation

• Planning optimisation and comparison


• Outcome monitoring.

Teaching Methods

• Lectures

• Interactive sessions

• Small working groups

• Individual practice.

Methods of Assessment

• Small working groups with experts

• On site Survey Monkey

• Questionnaires.



To follow

Key Words

Upper GI malignancies, oesophageal cancer, gastric cancer, gastroesophageal junction cancer, pancreatic cancer, biliar cancer, hepatocellular carcinoma, multidisciplinary management, delineation, planning, IGRT, outcome evaluation.

Further reading

Please consult the ESTRO website page of this course for further information.


Application for CME recognition will be submitted to the European Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (EACCME), an institution of the European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS). EACCME credits are recognised by the American Medical Association towards the Physician’s Recognition Award (PRA). Information on the status of the applications can be obtained from the ESTRO office


ESTRO members can order products at substantially reduced prices. Please note that in order to benefit from the member price, you must renew your membership for 2021 before registering to the course.To benefit from these member rates, please visit the membership page to become a member or renew your membership BEFORE proceeding with your order.



Standard Rate

Desk Rate

ESTRO members working in countries with a less competitive economic background*/ In-training members**

 350 EUR

 600 EUR


 400 EUR 

 600 EUR

Non Members

 500 EUR

 600 EUR

*  All specialties: Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia,, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, Serbia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, Ukraine

RTTs and physicists only: Cyprus  

RTTs only: Italy 

To apply for the above rate, please contact at least 2 weeks before the start of the course. Thereafter, the desk rate will be applied.

** Members with specialty Radiation Therapist (RTT) may register at the In Training fee

The standard rate is applied up to 2 weeks before the starting date of the course.

Desk rates are applied 2 weeks before the starting date of the course.


Advance registration & payment are required.              

Registration will close on the date published on the front page of the course.


A registration to the online workshop may be cancelled without any fees before pre-online course material is sent out. Pre-online course material is sent out a few days before the first workshop lesson. After the pre-online course material is sent out, no refund of the  registration fee is possible.

Fee for ESTRO members working in countries with a less competitive economic background:

ESTRO members working in countries with a less competitive economic background can benefit from the above fees if three conditions are met:

  1. Only ESTRO members for 2021 are eligible (please make sure your 2021 membership is in order before you apply for the reduced fees
  2. Sponsored candidates are not entitled to these fees (the invoicing address has to be the one of the participant)  
  3. Your application is submitted 2 weeks before the course start date

Early deadline: 14 March 2021