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PH30035: Medical physics

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2014/5
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Physics
Further information on credits Credits: 6
Further information on unit levels Level: Honours (FHEQ level 6)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Semester 2
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: EX 100%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Examination (EX 100%)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Mandatory extra work (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: Before taking this unit you must take PH10007 and take PH10008. Students must have A-level Physics in order to undertake this unit.
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
The aim of this unit is to introduce the application of physics and engineering to medicine, for both diagnosis and therapy.

Learning Outcomes:
After taking this unit the student should be able to:
* outline the diagnostic and therapeutic uses of x rays, gamma rays, radio frequency radiation, magnetic fields, electrons, neutrons, radionuclides and ultrasonic waves;
* describe the physical principles underlying specific areas of medical imaging and ionising radiation therapy;
* relate the quality of medical images to the physical principles underlying the equipment associated with their production, use, measurement and evaluation;
* perform basic calculations on medical applications of ultrasound, ionising radiations and magnetic resonance imaging;
* describe the principles of measurement of physiological actions, and associated means of signal processing and interpretation;
* develop an awareness of the magnitude of physiological signals obtained from the human body.

Numeracy T/F A, Problem Solving T/F A.

Introduction to course: Introduction to applications of physics and engineering to medicine. Structure of course, lecturers, style of lectures. Expectations. Hospital environment and patient focus. Careers in Medical Physics and Engineering.
X-ray imaging and MRI (5 hours): Physical properties of body tissues. Generation and character of photon beams, absorption and scattering processes in tissue. Radiodiagnostic techniques and equipment, plain radiography, fluoroscopy, computed tomography. Principles of dosimetry. Radiation protection. Production of cross-sectional images of tissue properties, and function, using nuclear magnetic resonance imaging.
Radiotherapeutic techniques (3 hours): Teletherapy, brachytherapy. Clinical applications and treatment planning. Generation and character of therapy beams of ionising particles, electrons, and heavier particles.
Nuclear medicine (5 hours): Radioactivity, nuclear transformations, radionuclide production and radiopharmaceuticals, radiation detection and measurement. Equipment, clinical practice, imaging and non-imaging, therapy. Radionuclide dosimetry. SPECT and PET techniques.
Ultrasonics (5 hours): Generation and description of ultrasonic fields; Near field and far field, focused fields and pulsed fields. Attenuation, absorption and scatter of tissue. Pulse-echo and Doppler methods. Imaging system design. Arrays. Clinical applications.
Physiological measurement (4 hours). Bioelectric potentials: cardiac, neurological, muscular sources: transducers, signal processing, interpretation: flow and pressure measurement, safety.
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

PH30035 is Optional on the following programmes:

Programmes in Natural Sciences
  • UXXX-AFB01 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 3)
  • UXXX-AAB02 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • UXXX-AKB02 : BSc(Hons) Natural Sciences with Year long work placement (Year 4)
  • UXXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 3)
  • UXXX-AKM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Professional Placement (Year 4)
  • UXXX-AAM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 4)
Department of Physics
  • USXX-AFB03 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics (Year 3)
  • USXX-AAB04 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USXX-AKB04 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Year long work placement (Year 4)
  • USXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Mathematics and Physics (Year 3)
  • USXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Mathematics and Physics (Year 4)
  • USXX-AAM01 : MSci(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USXX-AKM01 : MSci(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Year long work placement (Year 4)
  • USPH-AFB01 : BSc(Hons) Physics (Year 3)
  • USPH-AAB02 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USPH-AKB02 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Year long work placement (Year 4)
  • USPH-AFB09 : BSc Physics (Year 3)
  • USPH-AFM02 : MPhys(Hons) Physics (Year 3)
  • USPH-AKM04 : MPhys(Hons) Physics with Professional and Research Placements (Year 4)
  • USPH-AKM03 : MPhys(Hons) Physics with Professional Placement (Year 4)
  • USPH-AFM04 : MPhys(Hons) Physics with Research placement (Year 3)
  • USPH-AFB05 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Computing (Year 3)
  • USPH-AAB06 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Computing with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USPH-AKB06 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Computing with Year long work placement (Year 4)

* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2014/15 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2015/16 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2014/15.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.