CHILDREN who require radiotherapy cancer treatment are being helped through the trauma by simple toy bricks.

Glasgow’s Beatson has been gifted 100 sets of bricks which when built, create a model of a linear accelerator machine, which delivers radiotherapy treatment.

Medics say the kits helps take the fear out of the treatment and encourages young patients to ask questions and raise any fears or concerns.

After the treatment is over, children are encouraged to build something new as part of the transition to a ‘normal’ life.

The Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre (BWOSCC) is one of the first in Scotland to receive a donation of 100 models from The Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM) in York.

Jill Scott, Superintendent Radiographer at the BWOSCC, said: “The little linac is a novel and fun way of showing children and their families what our treatment machines look like and demonstrates how the linac moves and works.

“They also enable the children to play and talk about any concerns they may have regarding radiotherapy.”

The ‘Little Linac’ project was the brainchild of Professor David Brettle, Head of Medical Physics and Engineering at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

He said: “Toy bricks are every child’s favourite toy and are an ideal way to educate young patients about their treatment in a way that is designed to reduce their stress and anxiety, and so contribute to successful treatment sessions.

“After their treatment is over, the challenge to the children is to use the bricks to make something very different: a rocket, a rabbit, a robot, as part of their transition back to a more normal life.”