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Re-Thinking the Useful Clinical Beam Energy in Proton Therapy: An Opportunity for Cost Reduction

E Bentefour

El H Bentefour1*, H Lu2 , (1) IBA,Advanced Technology Group,Louvain La Neuve, BE, (2) Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA


SU-F-T-214 (Sunday, July 31, 2016) 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose:We conducted a retrospective study of the useful clinical proton beam energy based on the beam range data of patients treated over the last 10 years at Massachusetts General Hospital Proton Therapy Center.

Methods:Treatment field information were collected for all patients treated over the last 10 years (2005-2015) in the two gantry treatment rooms at MGH. The beam ranges for these fields were retrieved and categorized per treatment site. The 10 prostate patients that required the highest beam range (lateral fields) were selected. For these patients, anterior oblique beams (30-40 degrees) were simulated in a planning system to obtain the required beam ranges including the margins for potential range uncertainties.

Results:There were a total of 4033 patients, treated with combined total of 23603 fields. All treatment indications were considered with the exception of ocular tumors generally treated in a fixed beam room. For all non-prostate treatments (21811 fields), only 5 fields for 4 patients (1-pancreas, 1-lumbar chordoma, 2-spine mets) required beam range greater than 25 cm. There were 446 prostate patients (1792 fields), with the required beam range from 22.3 to 29.0 cm; 386 of them had at least one of their lateral beam range greater than 25 cm. For the 10 prostate patients with highest lateral beam ranges (26 to 29 cm), their treatment with anterior oblique beams would drop the beam ranges below 25 cm (17.3 to 18.5 cm).

Conclusion: if prostate patients are treated with anterior fields only, the useful maximum beam range is reduced to 25 cm. Thus a proton therapy system with maximum beam energy of 196 MeV is sufficient to treat all tumors sites with very rare exceptions (<0.1%). Designing such PT system would reduce the cost of proton therapy for hospitals and patients and increase the accessibility to the treatment.

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