Individualized nonadaptive and online-adaptive intensity-modulated radiotherapy treatment strategies for cervical cancer patients based on pretreatment acquired variable bladder filling computed tomography scans

M L Bondar, M S Hoogeman, J W Mens, S Quint, R Ahmad, G Dhawtal, B J Heijmen
International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics 2012 August 1, 83 (5): 1617-23

PURPOSE: To design and evaluate individualized nonadaptive and online-adaptive strategies based on a pretreatment established motion model for the highly deformable target volume in cervical cancer patients.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: For 14 patients, nine to ten variable bladder filling computed tomography (CT) scans were acquired at pretreatment and after 40 Gy. Individualized model-based internal target volumes (mbITVs) accounting for the cervix and uterus motion due to bladder volume changes were generated by using a motion-model constructed from two pretreatment CT scans (full and empty bladder). Two individualized strategies were designed: a nonadaptive strategy, using an mbITV accounting for the full-range of bladder volume changes throughout the treatment; and an online-adaptive strategy, using mbITVs of bladder volume subranges to construct a library of plans. The latter adapts the treatment online by selecting the plan-of-the-day from the library based on the measured bladder volume. The individualized strategies were evaluated by the seven to eight CT scans not used for mbITVs construction, and compared with a population-based approach. Geometric uniform margins around planning cervix-uterus and mbITVs were determined to ensure adequate coverage. For each strategy, the percentage of the cervix-uterus, bladder, and rectum volumes inside the planning target volume (PTV), and the clinical target volume (CTV)-to-PTV volume (volume difference between PTV and CTV) were calculated.

RESULTS: The margin for the population-based approach was 38 mm and for the individualized strategies was 7 to 10 mm. Compared with the population-based approach, the individualized nonadaptive strategy decreased the CTV-to-PTV volume by 48% ± 6% and the percentage of bladder and rectum inside the PTV by 5% to 45% and 26% to 74% (p < 0.001), respectively. Replacing the individualized nonadaptive strategy by an online-adaptive, two-plan library further decreased the percentage of bladder and rectum inside the PTV (0% to 10% and -1% to 9%; p < 0.004) and the CTV-to-PTV volume (4-96 ml).

CONCLUSIONS: Compared with population-based margins, an individualized PTV results in better organ-at-risk sparing. Online-adaptive radiotherapy further improves organ-at-risk sparing.

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