Reduced lung dose and improved inspiration level reproducibility in visually guided DIBH compared to audio coached EIG radiotherapy for breast cancer patients

Sidsel M S Damkjær, Marianne C Aznar, Anders N Pedersen, Ivan R Vogelius, Jens Peter Bangsgaard, Mirjana Josipovic
Acta Oncologica 2013, 52 (7): 1458-63

INTRODUCTION: Patients with left-sided breast cancer with lymph node involvement have routinely been treated with enhanced inspiration gating (EIG) for a decade at our institution. In a transition from EIG to deep inspiration breath hold (DIBH) we compared the two techniques with focus on target coverage, dose to organs at risk and reproducibility of the inspiration level (IL).

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Twenty-four patients were computed tomography (CT) scanned with EIG and DIBH. For DIBH we used visual feedback and for EIG audio coaching, both during scan and treatment. Treatment plans for 50 Gy over 25 fractions were calculated. Seventeen of the patients were included in the analysis of reproducibility. They were audio coached for one minute before beam-on in DIBH at nine treatment sessions. These respiration curves were analysed with average maximum IL and standard deviation (SD) for the EIG part of the respiratory signal, and mean IL and SD for the DIBH. Comparison of dosimetric and respiration parameters were performed with the Wilcoxon signed rank-sum test.

RESULTS: In DIBH, the ipsilateral lung volume increased further compared to EIG (p < 0.0004, mean increase 11%). This lead to a 9% mean reduction (p = 0.002) of the ipsilateral lung volume receiving 20 Gy (V20 Gy). We found no other significant dosimetric differences between the two methods. The reproducibility of the IL was better with the DIBH method, observed as a significantly smaller SD in most patients (p < 0.04 for 16 of 17 patients).

CONCLUSION: The DIBH method resulted in a significantly larger lung volume and lower ipsilateral lung V20 Gy compared to EIG. The IL for visually guided DIBH was more reproducible than audio-coached EIG. Based on these findings, the DIBH technique is our new breathing adaptation standard for radiotherapy of patients with left-sided breast cancer with lymph node involvement.

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