161 research outputs found

    PET-based dose painting in non-small cell lung cancer: Comparing uniform dose escalation with boosting hypoxic and metabolically active sub-volumes.

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    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: We compared two imaging biomarkers for dose-escalation in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Treatment plans boosting metabolically active sub-volumes defined by FDG-PET or hypoxic sub-volumes defined by HX4-PET were compared with boosting the entire tumour.MATERIALS AND METHODS: Ten NSCLC patients underwent FDG- and HX4-PET/CT scans prior to radiotherapy. Three isotoxic dose-escalation plans were compared per patient: plan A, boosting the primary tumour (PTVprim); plan B, boosting sub-volume with FDG >50% SUVmax (PTVFDG); plan C, boosting..

    Assessment of tumour size in PET/CT lung cancer studies: PET- and CT-based methods compared to pathology

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    BACKGROUND: Positron emission tomography (PET) may be useful for defining the gross tumour volume for radiation treatment planning and for response monitoring of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients. The purpose of this study was to compare tumour sizes obtained from CT- and various more commonly available PET-based tumour delineation methods to pathology findings. METHODS: Retrospective non-respiratory gated whole body [(18)F]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose PET/CT studies from 19 NSCLC patients were used. Several (semi-)automatic PET-based tumour delineation methods and manual CT-based delineation were used to assess the maximum tumour diameter. RESULTS: 50%, adaptive 41% threshold-based and contrast-oriented delineation methods showed good agreement with pathology after removing two outliers (R(2)=0.82). An absolute SUV threshold of 2.5 also showed a good agreement with pathology after the removal of 5 outliers (R(2): 0.79), but showed a significant overestimation in the maximum diameter (19.8 mm, p<0.05). Adaptive 50%, relative threshold level and gradient-based methods did not show any outliers, provided only small, non-significant differences in maximum tumour diameter (<4.7 mm, p>0.10), and showed fair correlation (R(2)>0.62) with pathology. Although adaptive 70% threshold-based methods showed underestimation compared to pathology (36%), it provided the best precision (SD: 14%) together with good correlation (R(2)=0.81). Good correlation between CT delineation and pathology was observed (R(2)=0.77). However, CT delineation showed a significant overestimation compared with pathology (3.8 mm, p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: PET-based tumour delineation methods provided tumour sizes in agreement with pathology and may therefore be useful to define the (metabolically most) active part of the tumour for radiotherapy and response monitoring purposes

    An Evaluation of Atlas Selection Methods for Atlas-Based Automatic Segmentation in Radiotherapy Treatment Planning

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    Atlas-based automatic segmentation is used \nin radiotherapy planning to accelerate the delineation of \norgans at risk (OARs). Atlas selection has been proposed \nas a way to improve the accuracy and execution time of \nsegmentation, assuming that, the more similar the atlas is to \nthe patient, the better the results will be. This paper presents \nan analysis of atlas selection methods in the context of \nradiotherapy treatment planning. For a range of commonly \ncontoured OARs, a thorough comparison of a large class \nof typical atlas selection methods has been performed. For \nthis evaluation, clinically contoured CT images of the head \nand neck (N = 316) and thorax (N = 280) were used. The \nstate-of-the-art intensity and deformation similarity-based \natlas selection methods were found to compare poorly to \nperfect atlas selection. Counter-intuitively, atlas selection \nmethods based on a fixed set of representative atlases \noutperformed atlas selection methods based on the patient \nimage. This study suggests that atlas-based segmentation \nwith currently available selection methods compares poorly \nto the potential best performance, hampering the clinical \nutility of atlas-based segmentation. Effective atlas selection \nremains an open challenge in atlas-based segmentation for \nradiotherapy planning

    Learning radiation oncology in Europe: Results of the ESTRO multidisciplinary survey

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    Introduction: Radiotherapy education can be very different across Europe, despite the publication of the ESTRO core curricula in 2011. The purpose of the current study is to map the different RO European education systems, to report their perceived quality and to understand what could be improved to better teach RO. Methods: An online survey consisting of 30 questions was sent to RO professionals under 40 years of age via email and social media. Clinicians, radiobiologists, physicists and radiation therapists (RTTs) were invited to answer questions regarding (1) demographics data, (2) duration, (3) organization, (4) content, (5) quality and potential improvements of national education programs. Results: Four hundred and sixty three questionnaires were received from 34 European countries. All disciplines were represented: 45% clinicians (n = 210), 29% physicists (n = 135), 24% RTTs (n = 108) and 2% radiobiologists (n = 10). Male and female participants were well-balanced in each speciality, except for radiobiologists (80% males). Median age was 31.5 years old (range 21–40). A large range of the duration of the National RO education programs was observed: median = 9 years (range: 3–15). In half of the surveyed countries the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), that facilitates mobility for trainees, has been implemented. Participants declared only a minority of countries have implemented the ESTRO Core Curriculum (n = 5). A quarter of participants indicated that their national education program is insufficient. Conclusion: This is the first study to examine the different RO education systems in Europe. Large differences in organization and duration of national education programs have been found, along with perceived quality across Europe within each speciality. These results show the necessity of a discussion on how to move forward in this diversity of education programs and the potential contribution that the ESTRO may fulfil

    A hybrid radiation detector for simultaneous spatial and temporal dosimetry

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    In this feasibility study an organic plastic scintillator is calibrated against ionisation chamber measurements and then embedded in a polymer gel dosimeter to obtain a quasi-4D experimental measurement of a radiation field. This hybrid dosimeter was irradiated with a linear accelerator, with temporal measurements of the dose rate being acquired by the scintillator and spatial measurements acquired with the gel dosimeter. The detectors employed in this work are radiologically equivalent; and we show that neither detector perturbs the intensity of the radiation field of the other. By employing these detectors in concert, spatial and temporal variations in the radiation intensity can now be detected and gel dosimeters can be calibrated for absolute dose from a single irradiation