JOURNAL ARTICLE

Setup variations in radiotherapy of anal cancer: advantages of target volume reduction using image-guided radiation treatment

Yi-Jen Chen, Steve Suh, Rebecca A Nelson, An Liu, Richard D Pezner, Jeffrey Y C Wong
International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics 2012 September 1, 84 (1): 289-95
22285668

PURPOSE: To define setup variations in the radiation treatment (RT) of anal cancer and to report the advantages of image-guided RT (IGRT) in terms of reduction of target volume and treatment-related side effects.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Twelve consecutive patients with anal cancer treated by combined chemoradiation by use of helical tomotherapy from March 2007 to November 2008 were selected. With patients immobilized and positioned in place, megavoltage computed tomography (MVCT) scans were performed before each treatment and were automatically registered to planning CT scans. Patients were shifted per the registration data and treated. A total of 365 MVCT scans were analyzed. The primary site received a median dose of 55 Gy. To evaluate the potential dosimetric advantage(s) of IGRT, cases were replanned according to Radiation Therapy Oncology Group 0529, with and without adding recommended setup variations from the current study.

RESULTS: Significant setup variations were observed throughout the course of RT. The standard deviations for systematic setup correction in the anterior-posterior (AP), lateral, and superior-inferior (SI) directions and roll rotation were 1.1, 3.6, and 3.2 mm, and 0.3°, respectively. The average random setup variations were 3.8, 5.5, and 2.9 mm, and 0.5°, respectively. Without daily IGRT, margins of 4.9, 11.1, and 8.5 mm in the AP, lateral, and SI directions would have been needed to ensure that the planning target volume (PTV) received ≥95% of the prescribed dose. Conversely, daily IGRT required no extra margins on PTV and resulted in a significant reduction of V15 and V45 of intestine and V10 of pelvic bone marrow. Favorable toxicities were observed, except for acute hematologic toxicity.

CONCLUSIONS: Daily MVCT scans before each treatment can effectively detect setup variations and thereby reduce PTV margins in the treatment of anal cancer. The use of concurrent chemotherapy and IGRT provided favorable toxicities, except for acute hematologic toxicity.

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