Tumor, lymph node, and lymph node-to-tumor displacements over a radiotherapy series: Analysis of interfraction and intrafraction variations using active breathing control (ABC) in lung cancer

Elisabeth Weiss, Scott P. Robertson, Nitai Mukhopadhyay, Geoffrey D. Hugo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: To estimate errors in soft tissue-based image guidance due to relative changes between primary tumor (PT) and affected lymph node (LN) position and volume, and to compare the results with bony anatomy-based displacements of PTs and LNs during radiotherapy of lung cancer. Methods and Materials: Weekly repeated breath-hold computed tomography scans were acquired in 17 lung cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy. PTs and affected LNs were manually contoured on all scans after rigid registration. Interfraction and intrafraction displacements in the centers of mass of PTs and LNs relative to bone, as well as LNs relative to PTs (LN-PT), were calculated. Results: The mean volume after 5 weeks was 65% for PTs and 63% for LNs. Systematic and random interfraction displacements were 2.6 to 4.6 mm and 2.7 to 2.9 mm, respectively, for PTs; 2.4 to 3.8 mm and 1.4 to 2.7 mm, respectively, for LNs; and 2.3 to 3.9 mm and 1.9 to 2.8 mm, respectively, for LN-PT. Systematic and random intrafraction displacements were less than 1 mm except in the superoinferior direction. Interfraction LN-PT displacements greater than 3 mm were observed in 67% of fractions and require a safety margin of 12 mm in the lateral direction, 11 mm in the anteroposterior direction, and 9 mm in the superoinferior direction. LN-PT displacements displayed significant time trends (p < 0.0001) and depended on the presence of pathoanatomic conditions of the ipsilateral lung, such as atelectasis. Conclusion: Interfraction LN-PT displacements were mostly systematic and comparable to bony anatomy-based displacements of PTs or LNs alone. Time trends, large volume changes, and the influence of pathoanatomic conditions underline the importance of soft tissue-based image guidance and the potential of plan adaptation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e639-e645
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Volume82
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 15 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Active breathing control
  • Image-guided radiotherapy
  • Interfraction motion
  • Intrafraction motion
  • Lung cancer

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