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Feasibility of MV CBCT-based treatment planning for urgent radiation therapy: dosimetric accuracy of MV CBCT-based dose calculations.

  • Author(s): Held, Mareike
  • Sneed, Penny K
  • Fogh, Shannon E
  • Pouliot, Jean
  • Morin, Olivier
  • et al.

Unlike scheduled radiotherapy treatments, treatment planning time and resources are limited for emergency treatments. Consequently, plans are often simple 2D image-based treatments that lag behind technical capabilities available for nonurgent radiotherapy. We have developed a novel integrated urgent workflow that uses onboard MV CBCT imaging for patient simulation to improve planning accuracy and reduce the total time for urgent treatments. This study evaluates both MV CBCT dose planning accuracy and novel urgent workflow feasibility for a variety of anatomic sites. We sought to limit local mean dose differences to less than 5% compared to conventional CT simulation. To improve dose calculation accuracy, we created separate Hounsfield unit-to-density calibration curves for regular and extended field-of-view (FOV) MV CBCTs. We evaluated dose calculation accuracy on phantoms and four clinical anatomical sites (brain, thorax/spine, pelvis, and extremities). Plans were created for each case and dose was calculated on both the CT and MV CBCT. All steps (simulation, planning, setup verification, QA, and dose delivery) were performed in one 30 min session using phantoms. The monitor units (MU) for each plan were compared and dose distribution agreement was evaluated using mean dose difference over the entire volume and gamma index on the central 2D axial plane. All whole-brain dose distributions gave gamma passing rates higher than 95% for 2%/2 mm criteria, and pelvic sites ranged between 90% and 98% for 3%/3 mm criteria. However, thoracic spine treatments produced gamma passing rates as low as 47% for 3%/3 mm criteria. Our novel MV CBCT-based dose planning and delivery approach was feasible and time-efficient for the majority of cases. Limited MV CBCT FOV precluded workflow use for pelvic sites of larger patients and resulted in image clearance issues when tumor position was far off midline. The agreement of calculated MU on CT and MV CBCT was acceptable for all treatment sites.

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