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Are the Approximations in Analytic Semi-Empirical Dose Calculation Algorithms for Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy for Complex Heterogeneities of Head and Neck Clinically Significant?

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P Yepes

P Yepes1,2* , U Titt2 , D Mirkovic2 , A Liu2 , S Frank2 , R Mohan2 (1) Rice University, Houston, TX, (2) UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX


SU-F-T-148 (Sunday, July 31, 2016) 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: Evaluate the differences in dose distributions between the proton analytic semi-empirical dose calculation algorithm used in the clinic and Monte Carlo calculations for a sample of 50 head-and-neck (H&N) patients and estimate the potential clinical significance of the differences.

Methods: A cohort of 50 H&N patients, treated at the University of Texas Cancer Center with Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy (IMPT), were selected for evaluation of clinical significance of approximations in computed dose distributions. H&N site was selected because of the highly inhomogeneous nature of the anatomy. The Fast Dose Calculator (FDC), a fast track-repeating accelerated Monte Carlo algorithm for proton therapy, was utilized for the calculation of dose distributions delivered during treatment plans. Because of its short processing time, FDC allows for the processing of large cohorts of patients. FDC has been validated versus GEANT4, a full Monte Carlo system and measurements in water and for inhomogeneous phantoms. A gamma-index analysis, DVHs, EUDs, and TCP and NTCPs computed using published models were utilized to evaluate the differences between the Treatment Plan System (TPS) and FDC.

Results: The Monte Carlo results systematically predict lower dose delivered in the target. The observed differences can be as large as 8 Gy, and should have a clinical impact. Gamma analysis also showed significant differences between both approaches, especially for the target volumes.

Conclusions: Monte Carlo calculations with fast algorithms is practical and should be considered for the clinic, at least as a treatment plan verification tool.

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