A Dose Accumulation Assessment of Alignment Errors During Spatially Fractionated Radiation Therapy

John Ginn, Sai Duriseti, Thomas Mazur, Matthew Spraker, James Kavanaugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Spatially fractionated radiation therapy (SFRT) techniques produce high-dose peaks and low-dose valleys within a tumor. Lattice stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) is a form a SFRT delivered across 5 fractions. Because of the high spatial dose gradients associated with SFRT, it is critical for fractionated SFRT patients to be aligned correctly for treatment. Here we investigate the dosimetric effect of daily alignment uncertainty through a dose accumulation study. Methods and Materials: Dose accumulation was retrospectively performed for 10 patients enrolled on a phase 1 trial. Lattice stereotactic body radiation therapy was completed in 5 fractions with 20 Gy prescribed to the entire tumor and a simultaneous integrated boost of 66.7 Gy prescribed to a set of regularly spaced high-dose spheres. Daily alignment error was quantified through manually selected landmarks in both the planning computed tomography scan and daily cone beam computed tomography. The dosimetric effect of alignment errors was quantified by translating the isocenter in the treatment planning system by the daily average alignment error. Large errors were simulated by translating isocenter 5 and 10 mm for 1 and 2 fractions, independently assessing errors in the superior-inferior and axial directions. The reduction of dose gradients was quantified using the dose ratio (DR) of the mean dose in the high-dose and low-dose spheres. Results: The average alignment error was 1.8 mm across the patient population resulting in minor smoothing of the high- and low-dose distributions in the dose accumulation. Quantitatively, the DR decreased from 3.42 to 3.32 (P = .093) in the dose accumulation study. The simulated worst case was an inferior-superior shift of 10 mm for 2 fractions where the average DR decreased to 2.72 (P = .0001). Conclusions: The dose accumulation study revealed on average DR only decreased from 3.42 to 3.32. However, setup errors >5 mm resulted in larger dosimetric degradation, reflecting a larger effect for individual high-dose spheres within regions exhibiting larger displacements.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPractical Radiation Oncology
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


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