Radiation therapy physics
Feasibility of a unified approach to intensity-modulated radiation therapy and volume-modulated arc therapy optimization and delivery
To study the feasibility of unified intensity-modulated arc therapy (UIMAT) which combines intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) and volumetric-modulated arc therapy (VMAT) optimization and delivery to produce superior radiation treatment plans, both in terms of dose distribution and efficiency of beam delivery when compared with either VMAT or IMRT alone.
An inverse planning algorithm for UIMAT was prototyped within the pinnacle treatment planning system (Philips Healthcare). The IMRT and VMAT deliveries are unified within the same arc, with IMRT being delivered at specific gantry angles within the arc. Optimized gantry angles for the IMRT and VMAT phases are assigned automatically by the inverse optimization algorithm. Optimization of the IMRT and VMAT phases is done simultaneously using a direct aperture optimization algorithm. Five treatment plans each for prostate, head and neck, and lung were generated using a unified optimization technique and compared with clinical IMRT or VMAT plans. Delivery verification was performed with an ArcCheck phantom (Sun Nuclear) on a Varian TrueBeam linear accelerator (Varian Medical Systems).
In this prototype implementation, the UIMAT plans offered the same target dose coverage while reducing mean doses to organs at risk by 8.4% for head-and-neck cases, 5.7% for lung cases, and 3.5% for prostate cases, compared with the VMAT or IMRT plans. In addition, UIMAT can be delivered with similar efficiency as VMAT.
In this proof-of-concept work, a novel radiation therapy optimization and delivery technique that interlaces VMAT or IMRT delivery within the same arc has been demonstrated. Initial results show that unified VMAT/IMRT has the potential to be superior to either standard IMRT or VMAT.