4D dose simulation in volumetric arc therapy: Accuracy and affecting parametersReport as inadecuate

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Radiotherapy of lung and liver lesions has changed from normofractioned 3D-CRT to stereotactic treatment in a single or few fractions, often employing volumetric arc therapy VMAT-based techniques. Potential unintended interference of respiratory target motion and dynamically changing beam parameters during VMAT dose delivery motivates establishing 4D quality assurance 4D QA procedures to assess appropriateness of generated VMAT treatment plans when taking into account patient-specific motion characteristics. Current approaches are motion phantom-based 4D QA and image-based 4D VMAT dose simulation. Whereas phantom-based 4D QA is usually restricted to a small number of measurements, the computational approaches allow simulating many motion scenarios. However, 4D VMAT dose simulation depends on various input parameters, influencing estimated doses along with mitigating simulation reliability. Thus, aiming at routine use of simulation-based 4D VMAT QA, the impact of such parameters as well as the overall accuracy of the 4D VMAT dose simulation has to be studied in detail–which is the topic of the present work. In detail, we introduce the principles of 4D VMAT dose simulation, identify influencing parameters and assess their impact on 4D dose simulation accuracy by comparison of simulated motion-affected dose distributions to corresponding dosimetric motion phantom measurements. Exploiting an ITV-based treatment planning approach, VMAT treatment plans were generated for a motion phantom and different motion scenarios sinusoidal motion of different period-direction; regular-irregular motion. 4D VMAT dose simulation results and dose measurements were compared by local 3% - 3 mm γ-evaluation, with the measured dose distributions serving as ground truth. Overall γ-passing rates of simulations and dynamic measurements ranged from 97% to 100% mean across all motion scenarios: 98% ± 1%; corresponding values for comparison of different day repeat measurements were between 98% and 100%. Parameters of major influence on 4D VMAT dose simulation accuracy were the degree of temporal discretization of the dose delivery process the higher, the better and correct alignment of the assumed breathing phases at the beginning of the dose measurements and simulations. Given the high γ-passing rates between simulated motion-affected doses and dynamic measurements, we consider the simulations to provide a reliable basis for assessment of VMAT motion effects that–in the sense of 4D QA of VMAT treatment plans–allows to verify target coverage in hypofractioned VMAT-based radiotherapy of moving targets. Remaining differences between measurements and simulations motivate, however, further detailed studies.

Author: Thilo Sothmann , Tobias Gauer , René Werner

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/


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