SU-E-T-105: An FMEA Survey of Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) Step and Shoot Dose Delivery Failure Modes

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Abstract

Purpose:

To assess the perception of TG-142 tolerance level dose delivery failures in IMRT and the application of FMEA process to this specific aspect of IMRT.

Methods:

An online survey was distributed to medical physicists worldwide that briefly described 11 different failure modes (FMs) covered by basic quality assurance in step- and-shoot IMRT at or near TG-142 tolerance criteria levels. For each FM, respondents estimated the worst case H&N patient percent dose error and FMEA scores for Occurrence, Detectability, and Severity. Demographic data was also collected.

Results:

181 individual and three group responses were submitted. 84% were from North America. Most (76%) individual respondents performed at least 80% clinical work and 92% were nationally certified. Respondent medical physics experience ranged from 2.5–45 years (average 18 years). 52% of individual respondents were at least somewhat familiar with FMEA, while 17% were not familiar. Several IMRT techniques, treatment planning systems and linear accelerator manufacturers were represented. All FMs received widely varying scores ranging from 1–10 for occurrence, at least 1–9 for detectability, and at least 1–7 for severity. Ranking FMs by RPN scores also resulted in large variability, with each FM being ranked both most risky (1st ) and least risky (11th) by different respondents. On average MLC modeling had the highest RPN scores. Individual estimated percent dose errors and severity scores positively correlated (p<0.10) for each FM as expected. No universal correlations were found between the demographic information collected and scoring, percent dose errors, or ranking.

Conclusion:

FMs investigated overall were evaluated as low to medium risk, with average RPNs less than 110. The ranking of 11 FMs was not agreed upon by the community. Large variability in FMEA scoring may be caused by individual interpretation and/or experience, thus reflecting the subjective nature of the FMEA tool.

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