RESPONSE, a health information software specific for radiation therapy (RT) has been developed. This tool intends to proactively contribute to improve patient outcome registration, helping the radiation oncologist during the medical consultation, but also to be a tool with research goals.
System workflow starts by the definition of basic disease and treatment parameters. Depending on the selected items, the proper panels for the registration of patient complications and tumor response are displayed. Different panels were built for the registration of early and late complications based on international recommendations of side-effects. For the documentation of the local tumor response up to a distant event, different panels listing options based on the tumor type selected were implemented. For software development the pathology of head and neck tumors, using mainly RTOG/EORTC guidelines, was chosen.
RESPONSE is being used clinically since the middle of 2011. Since then data from 470 patients during 4068 medical visits were electronically stored. This resulted in the documentation of 35071 endpoints including complications of the: salivary glands, esophagus, larynx, skin, mucous membrane, ear, brachial plexus, etc as well as hematologic toxicity and more than 1400 entries on tumor response.
RESPONSE graphical interface was designed to be simple and user-friendly requiring almost no training prior to use and to organize the data for the researcher without the need for the medical team to perform any further clinical data processing. With the electronic registration of the outcome of all patients, a large database was generated in a relatively short time. By avoiding descriptive registers, the subjectivity of the information was substantially reduced allowing a complete systemization of the clinical data.