Treating breast cancer patients with radiation therapy is the sole clinical focus for Asal Rahimi, M.D., M.S. Her experience in this area gives her the tools necessary to answer patient questions openly and honestly. Preparing for radiation treatment, or any kind of cancer treatment, can be scary, she says, and spending time with patients until they feel comfortable with their treatment plan is an important part of the process.

Breast cancer patients who come to UT Southwestern have access to technology and expertise they can’t find anywhere else in North Texas.”

Dr. Rahimi is a highly trained board-certified radiation oncologist and a key member of the breast cancer care team at UT Southwestern. She joined the team in August 2011 after concluding her residency in radiation oncology at the University of Virginia and completing special training with the American Brachytherapy Society that same year.

Over the last decade, radiation treatment for breast cancer has been moving from treatment of the whole breast toward the (still investigational) option of partial breast irradiation, which was the focus of the special training Dr. Rahimi completed with the American Brachytherapy Society. This approach exposes the heart, lungs, and skin to less unnecessary radiation and can be delivered via interstitial brachytherapy, balloon brachytherapy, or external beam radiation therapy.

Dr. Rahimi is looking forward to the arrival of the experimental Gamma Pod radiotherapy system at UT Southwestern in the coming months, one of the first such systems in the United States. The Gamma Pod is a platform for stereotactic radiation, like the Gamma Knife for brain tumors, that immobilizes the breast and allows for higher doses of radiation to the breast tumor in fewer visits.

“The Gamma Pod will give us a non-invasive tool for partial breast cancer radiation treatments,” says Dr. Rahimi. “I know my patients would appreciate that. It’s less disrupting to their lives outside of their cancer.”

Clinical Interests

  • Breast cancer radiation therapy
  • Partial breast irradiation
  • Deep inspiratory breath hold
  • Invasive brachytherapy
  • Non-invasive radiation therapy
  • Gamma Pod
  • Hypofractionation/hypofractionated radiation treatment


Graduate School
Finch University of Health Sciences (2002)
Medical School
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science (2006)
University of Virginia Medical Center (2007), Internal Medicine
University of Virginia Medical Center (2011), Radiation Oncology


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Review of breast screening: Toward clinical realization of microwave imaging.
Modiri A, Goudreau S, Rahimi A, Kiasaleh K Med Phys 2017 Oct
Comprehensive target geometric errors and margin assessment in stereotactic partial breast irradiation.
Zhen X, Zhao B, Wang Z, Timmerman R, Spangler A, Kim N, Rahimi A, Gu X Radiat Oncol 2017 Sep 12 1 151
New Techniques for Irradiating Early Stage Breast Cancer: Stereotactic Partial Breast Irradiation.
Rahimi A, Timmerman R Semin Radiat Oncol 2017 Jul 27 3 279-288
Carbon Ion Radiotherapy: A Review of Clinical Experiences and Preclinical Research, with an Emphasis on DNA Damage/Repair.
Mohamad O, Sishc BJ, Saha J, Pompos A, Rahimi A, Story MD, Davis AJ, Kim DWN Cancers (Basel) 2017 Jun 9 6
Preliminary Results of a Phase 1 Dose-Escalation Trial for Early-Stage Breast Cancer Using 5-Fraction Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy for Partial-Breast Irradiation.
Rahimi A, Thomas K, Spangler A, Rao R, Leitch M, Wooldridge R, Rivers A, Seiler S, Albuquerque K, Stevenson S, Goudreau S, Garwood D, Haley B, Euhus D, Heinzerling J, Ding C, Gao A, Ahn C, Timmerman R Int. J. Radiat. Oncol. Biol. Phys. 2017 May 98 1 196-205.e2
Deep inspiration breathhold for left-sided breast cancer patients with unfavorable cardiac anatomy requiring internal mammary nodal irradiation.
Mohamad O, Shiao J, Zhao B, Roach K, Ramirez E, Vo DT, Thomas K, Gu X, Spangler A, Albuquerque K, Rahimi A Pract Radiat Oncol 2017 Apr
Aspirin/antiplatelet agent use improves disease-free survival and reduces the risk of distant metastases in Stage II and III triple-negative breast cancer patients.
Shiao J, Thomas KM, Rahimi AS, Rao R, Yan J, Xie XJ, DaSilva M, Spangler A, Leitch M, Wooldridge R, Rivers A, Farr D, Haley B, Kim DW Breast Cancer Res. Treat. 2016 Dec
Genetic Ancestry using Mitochondrial DNA in patients with Triple-negative breast cancer (GAMiT study).
Rao R, Rivers A, Rahimi A, Wooldridge R, Rao M, Leitch M, Euhus D, Haley BB Cancer 2016 Sep
Ultrasound-Guided Placement of Gold Fiducial Markers for Stereotactic Partial-Breast Irradiation.
Seiler S, Rahimi A, Choudhery S, Garwood D, Spangler A, Cherian S, Goudreau S AJR Am J Roentgenol 2016 Sep 207 3 685-8
Absence of physiologic breast response to pregnancy and lactation after radiation therapy
Mohamad O, McFarlane M, Rahimi A Pract Radiat Onco 2016 6 2 25-26

Honors & Awards

  • ARRO Educator of the Year
    The award is presented in partnership with ASTRO for the recognition of excellence in teaching, enthusiasm, and support for radiation oncology residency training. (2013)
  • American Brachytherapy Society and Nucletron Sponsored HDR Fellowship
    Arizona Breast Cancer Specialist breast HDR specialty training (2011)
  • RSNA Resident Fellowship Research Award
  • University of Virginia Resident Clinical Excellence Award
    Resident Clinical Excellence Award (2009)
  • MD with Distinction in Research
    Research Honor Thesis (2006)
  • Alpha Omega Alpha
    Honor Society (2005)

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • NRG National Breast Committee (2015)
  • American Brachytherapy Society (2010)
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology (2007)
  • American Society Therapeutic Radiation Oncology (2007)
  • Radiological Society of North America