MO-FG-BRA-04: A Novel Time Weighted Density Correction for Stereotactic Lung Radiotherapy: A Phantom Study

Authors


Abstract

Purpose:

Conventional treatment plans for lung radiotherapy are created using either the free breathing (FB) scheme which represents the tumor at an arbitrary breathing phase of the patient's respiratory cycle, or the average computed tomography (ACT) intensity projection over 10-binned phases. Neither method is entirely accurate because of the absence of time dependence of tumor movement. In the present “Hybrid” method, the HU of tumor in 3D space is determined by relative weighting of the HU of the tumor and lung in proportion to the time they spend at that location during the entire breathing cycle.

Methods:

A Quasar respiratory motion phantom was employed to simulate lung tumor movement. Utilizing 4DCT image scans, volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) plans were generated for three treatment planning scenarios which included conventional FB and ACT schemes, along with a third alternative Hybrid approach. Our internal target volume (ITV) hybrid structure was created using Boolean operation in Eclipse (ver. 11) treatment planning system, where independent sub-regions created by the gross tumor volume (GTV) overlap from the 10 motion phases were each assigned a time weighted CT value. The dose-volume-histograms (DVH) for each scheme were compared and analyzed.

Results:

Using our hybrid technique, we have demonstrated a reduction of 1.9% – 3.4% in total monitor units with respect to conventional treatment planning strategies, along with a 6 fold improvement in high dose spillage over the FB plan. The higher density ACT and Hybrid schemes also produced a slight enhancement in target conformity and reduction in low dose spillage.

Conclusion:

All treatment plans created in this study exceeded RTOG protocol criteria. Our results determine the free breathing approach yields an inaccurate account of the target treatment density. A significant decrease in unnecessary lung irradiation can be achieved by implementing Hybrid HU method with ACT method second best.

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