SU-E-T-541: Bolus Effect of Thermoplastic Masks in IMRT and VMAT Head and Neck Treatments




To quantitatively evaluate the bolus effect of thermoplalstic mask on patient skin dose during multi-field IMRT and VMAT treatment.


The clinically approved target contours for five head and neck patients were deformably registered to an anthropomorphic Rando phantom. Two plans: Multifield IMRT plan with 7-9 beams and VMAT plan with 2-4 arcs were created for each patient following same dose constraints. 3mm skin was excluded from PTVs but not constrained during optimization. The prescription dose was 200-220 cGy/fraction. A thermoplastic head and shoulder mask was customized for the Rando phantom. Each plan was delivered to the phantom twice with and without mask. During each delivery, two rectangular strips of EBT3 films (1cm x 6.8cm) were placed across the anterior upper and lower neck near PTVs to measure the surface dose. For consistency films were positioned at same locations for same patient. A total of 8 film strips were obtained for each patient. Film dose was calibrated in the range of 0-400cGy on the day of plan delivery. For dose comparison 3 regions of interests (ROIs) of 1×1 cm2 were selected at left, right and middle part of each film, resulting in 6 point doses at each plan delivery.


The films without mask show relatively uniform dose distribution while those with mask clearly show mesh pattern of mask, usually indicating an increase in skin dose. On average the increase in skin dose over all ROIs with mask was 31.9%(±14.8%) with a range of 11.4%- 58.4%. There is no statistically significant difference (p=0.44) between skin dose increase in VMAT (30.8%±15.3%) and IMRT delivery (33.0%±14.9%).


Thermoplastic immobilization masks increase surface dose for HN patient by around 30%. The magnitude is comparable between multi-field IMRT and VMAT. Radiochromic EBT3 film serves as an effective tool to quantify bolus effect.