SU-E-T-469: A Practical Approach for the Determination of Small Field Output Factors Using Published Monte Carlo Derived Correction Factors

Authors


Abstract

Purpose:

Output factor determination for small fields (less than 20 mm) presents significant challenges due to ion chamber volume averaging and diode over-response. Measured output factor values between detectors are known to have large deviations as field sizes are decreased. No set standard to resolve this difference in measurement exists. We observed differences between measured output factors of up to 14% using two different detectors. Published Monte Carlo derived correction factors were used to address this challenge and decrease the output factor deviation between detectors.

Methods:

Output factors for Elekta's linac-based stereotactic cone system were measured using the EDGE detector (Sun Nuclear) and the A16 ion chamber (Standard Imaging). Measurements conditions were 100 cm SSD (source to surface distance) and 1.5 cm depth. Output factors were first normalized to a 10.4 cm × 10.4 cm field size using a daisy-chaining technique to minimize the dependence of field size on detector response. An equation expressing the relation between published Monte Carlo correction factors as a function of field size for each detector was derived. The measured output factors were then multiplied by the calculated correction factors. EBT3 gafchromic film dosimetry was used to independently validate the corrected output factors.

Results:

Without correction, the deviation in output factors between the EDGE and A16 detectors ranged from 1.3 to 14.8%, depending on cone size. After applying the calculated correction factors, this deviation fell to 0 to 3.4%. Output factors determined with film agree within 3.5% of the corrected output factors.

Conclusion:

We present a practical approach to applying published Monte Carlo derived correction factors to measured small field output factors for the EDGE and A16 detectors. Using this method, we were able to decrease the percent deviation between both detectors from 14.8% to 3.4% agreement.

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