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Superficial dose distribution in breast for tangential radiation treatment, Monte Carlo evaluation of Eclipse algorithms in case of phantom and patient geometries.

Journal article
Authors Roumiana Chakarova
Magnus Gustafsson
Anna Bäck
Ninni Drugge
Åsa Palm
Andreas Lindberg
Mattias Berglund
Published in Radiotherapy and oncology : journal of the European Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology
ISSN 1879-0887
Publication year 2011
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Radiation Physics
Language en
Subject categories Radiological physics


PURPOSE: The aim of this study is to examine experimentally and by the Monte Carlo method the accuracy of the Eclipse Pencil Beam Convolution (PBC) and Analytical Anisotropic Algorithm (AAA) algorithms in the superficial region (0-2cm) of the breast for tangential photon beams in a phantom case as well as in a number of patient geometries. The aim is also to identify differences in how the patient computer tomography data are handled by the treatment planning system and in the Monte Carlo simulations in order to reduce influences of these effects on the evaluation. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Measurements by thermoluminescent dosimeters and gafchromic film are performed for six MV tangential irradiation of the cylindrical solid water phantom. Tangential treatment of seven patients is investigated considering open beams. Dose distributions are obtained by the Eclipse PBC and AAA algorithms. Monte Carlo calculations are carried out by BEAMnrc/DOSXYZnrc code package. Calculations are performed with a calculation grid of 1.25×1.25×5mm(3) for PBC and 2×2×5mm(3) for AAA and Monte Carlo, respectively. Dose comparison is performed in both dose and spatial domains by the normalized dose difference method. RESULTS: Experimental profiles from the surface toward the geometrical center of the cylindrical phantom are obtained at the beam entrance and exit as well as laterally. Full dose is received beyond 2mm in the lateral superficial region and beyond 7mm at the beam entrance. Good agreement between experimental, Monte Carlo and AAA data is obtained, whereas PBC is seen to underestimate the entrance dose the first 3-4mm and the lateral dose by more than 5% up to 8mm depth. In the patient cases considered, AAA and Monte Carlo show agreement within 3% dose and 4mm spatial tolerance. PBC systematically underestimates the dose at the breast apex. The dimensions of region out of tolerance vary with the local breast shape. Different interpretations of patient boundaries in Monte Carlo and the Eclipse are found to influence the evaluation. Computer tomography marker wire may introduce local disturbance effects on the comparison as well. These factors are not related to the accuracy of the calculation algorithms and their effect is taken into account in the evaluation. CONCLUSIONS: The accuracy of AAA in the case of the solid water phantom is comparable with that of the Monte Carlo method. The AAA-Monte Carlo differences in the patient cases considered are within 3%, 4mm tolerance. The PBC algorithm does not give equivalent results. In the phantom case, PBC underestimates the lateral dose by more than 5% up to 8mm depth. The PBC-Monte Carlo differences in the patient cases are outside the tolerance at the breast apex. The dimension of region varies with the breast shape being typically 8-10mm long and 6-8mm deep.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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