Dosimetric study on learning-based cone-beam CT correction in adaptive radiation therapy

Tonghe Wang, Yang Lei, Nivedh Manohar, Sibo Tian, Ashesh B Jani, Hui-Kuo Shu, Kristin Higgins, Anees Dhabaan, Pretesh Patel, Xiangyang Tang, Tian Liu, Walter J Curran, Xiaofeng Yang
Medical Dosimetry: Official Journal of the American Association of Medical Dosimetrists 2019 April 1

INTRODUCTION: Cone-beam CT (CBCT) image quality is important for its quantitative analysis in adaptive radiation therapy. However, due to severe artifacts, the CBCTs are primarily used for verifying patient setup only so far. We have developed a learning-based image quality improvement method which could provide CBCTs with image quality comparable to planning CTs (pCTs). The accuracy of dose calculations based on these CBCTs is unknown. In this study, we aim to investigate the dosimetric accuracy of our corrected CBCT (CCBCT) in brain stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and pelvic radiotherapy.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively investigated a total of 32 treatment plans from 22 patients, each of whom with both original treatment pCTs and CBCTs acquired during treatment setup. The CCBCT and original CBCT (OCBCT) were registered to the pCT for generating CCBCT-based and OCBCT-based treatment plans. The original pCT-based plans served as ground truth. Clinically-relevant dose volume histogram (DVH) metrics were extracted from the ground truth, OCBCT-based and CCBCT-based plans for comparison. Gamma analysis was also performed to compare the absorbed dose distributions between the pCT-based and OCBCT/CCBCT-based plans of each patient.

RESULTS: CCBCTs demonstrated better image contrast and more accurate HU ranges when compared side-by-side with OCBCTs. For pelvic radiotherapy plans, the mean dose error in DVH metrics for planning target volume (PTV), bladder and rectum was significantly reduced, from 1% to 0.3%, after CBCT correction. The gamma analysis showed the average pass rate increased from 94.5% before correction to 99.0% after correction. For brain SRS treatment plans, both original and corrected CBCT images were accurate enough for dose calculation, though CCBCT featured higher image quality.

CONCLUSION: CCBCTs can provide a level of dose accuracy comparable to traditional pCTs for brain and prostate radiotherapy planning and the correction method proposed here can be useful in CBCT-guided adaptive radiotherapy.

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