Dosimetric comparison of proton and photon three-dimensional, conformal, external beam accelerated partial breast irradiation techniques

Kevin R Kozak, Angela Katz, Judith Adams, Elizabeth M Crowley, Jacqueline A Nyamwanda, Jennifer K Feng, Karen P Doppke, Thomas F Delaney, Alphonse G Taghian
International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics 2006 August 1, 65 (5): 1572-8

PURPOSE: To compare the dosimetry of proton and photon-electron three-dimensional, conformal, external beam accelerated partial breast irradiation (3D-CPBI).

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Twenty-four patients with fully excised, Stage I breast cancer treated with adjuvant proton 3D-CPBI had treatment plans generated using the mixed-modality, photon-electron 3D-CPBI technique. To facilitate dosimetric comparisons, planning target volumes (PTVs; lumpectomy site plus 1.5-2.0 cm margin) and prescribed dose (32 Gy) were held constant. Plans were optimized for PTV coverage and normal tissue sparing.

RESULTS: Proton and mixed-modality plans both provided acceptable PTV coverage with 95% of the PTV receiving 90% of the prescribed dose in all cases. Both techniques also provided excellent dose homogeneity with a dose maximum exceeding 110% of the prescribed dose in only one case. Proton 3D-CPBI reduced the volume of nontarget breast tissue receiving 50% of the prescribed dose by an average of 36%. Statistically significant reductions in the volume of total ipsilateral breast receiving 100%, 75%, 50%, and 25% of the prescribed dose were also observed. The use of protons resulted in small, but statistically significant, reductions in the radiation dose delivered to 5%, 10%, and 20% of ipsilateral and contralateral lung and heart. The nontarget breast tissue dosimetric advantages of proton 3D-CPBI were not dependent on tumor location, breast size, PTV size, or the ratio of PTV to breast volume.

CONCLUSIONS: Compared to photon-electron 3D-CPBI, proton 3D-CPBI significantly reduces the volume of irradiated nontarget breast tissue. Both approaches to accelerated partial breast irradiation offer exceptional lung and heart sparing.

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