SU-F-T-298: The Impact of Modeling the Treatment Couch On Patient Specific VMAT QA




The aim of this work is to quantify the impact of modeling the treatment couch on the passing rate of ion chamber measurements during VMAT quality assurance.


For the initial characterization, attenuation and surface dose measurements were performed following the guidelines of TG-176 for the Civco Universal couch top using an Elekta VersaHD accelerator at an energy of 6 MV. A simulation CT was performed to aid in the creation of contours for representing the shape and size of the couch top in the treatment planning system (TPS). A uniform value of density for the couch wall was determined by comparing the ratios of ion chamber measurements made in a 30×30×11 cm3 water phantom with the TPS dose values of a plan with the same geometry. At our institution, patient specific quality assurance is performed using a Sun Nuclear ArcCheck with a multi-plug for chamber measurements, a 0.125cc PTW TN31010 chamber, and a Sun Nuclear 1010 electrometer. Ten VMAT plans were transferred into the phantom geometry created in the TPS with two settings: with and without the couch. The chamber measurements were compared to both treatment plans.


A maximum attenuation of 3.6% was observed when the gantry angle was set to 120 and 240 degrees, passing obliquely through the couch. A uniform density of 0.6 g/cm3 for the couch wall was determined in the TPS by comparison with measured data. The VMAT ion chamber measurement/plan ratios systematically improved by 1.79% ±0.53% for all patients when the couch was included in the calculation.


The attenuation and surface dose changes produced by the Civco couch can generate observable dose difference in VMAT plans. Including a couch model in the phantom plan used for patient specific VMAT QA can improve the ionization chamber agreement by up to ∼2%.