Surgical Planning Laboratory - Brigham & Women's Hospital - Boston, Massachusetts USA - a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School

Surgical Planning Laboratory

Agnieszka Szot M.D. (August 2002-June 2006)

Agnieszka is a research fellow in the Surgical Planning Laboratory at Brigham and Women's Hospital working with Dr. Clare Tempany.

She completed her M.D. degree from Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland in 1997, and finished her internship and completed 1.5 years of Radiology residency at Jagiellonian University Hospital. In 2000 she entered a joint Harvard/MIT master's program in medical informatics, which she finished in June 2002 receiving her M.S. degree.

She is currently conducting three projects in prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment:

In her first project, she will prospectively compare quality of life (QoL) outcomes between patients treated with ultrasound-guided (US-guided) and magnetic resonance- guieded (MR-guided) brachytherapy. MR-guided brachytherapy is an emerging method of treatment that allows for more precise seed placement as well as real-time dosimetric coverage analysis. The great advantage of prospective studies is the possibility of assessing the real influence of therapy on QoL outcomes by comparing them with patients' initial QoL before the treatment. She will perform a longitudinal prospective study of treatment-related outcomes by comparing baseline bowel, urinary, and sexual function scores with 3, 12, 24, and 36 months scores as well as comparing outcomes between US- and MR-guided brachytherapy at the same time points. This project is conducted in collaboration with Drs. Anthony D'Amico (BWH), James Talcott (MGH) and Irving Kaplan (BI).

Her second project is in collaboration with Dr. William Oh from the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. It is a phase II trial determining efficacy of neoadjuvant chemotherapeutic drug Docetaxel alone used prior to radical prostatectomy. The investigators are looking at biochemical response (PSA) as well as changes in prostate volume and largest measurable tumor volume as determined by endorectal MRI. Secondary endpoints include: toxicity, apoptosis rate, and microarray analysis.

The third project is to evaluate the accuracy of an image segmentation and registration method used to segment neurovascular bundles (NVBs) in MR images obtained before and after MRBT. The information on the location of NVBs in post-brachytherapy images will be used for calculation of the radiation dose to NVBs. Radiation dose will then be correlated with patient's sexual outcomes as determined by QoL questionnaires distributed at baseline, and after 3, 12, and 24 month.

E-mail: aszot at bwh.harvard.edu

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