Triphasic contrast enhanced CT simulation with bolus tracking for pancreas SBRT target delineation.
Bolus-tracked multiphasic contrast computed tomography (CT) is often used in diagnostic radiology to enhance the visibility of pancreas tumors, but is uncommon in radiation therapy pancreas CT simulation, and its impact on gross tumor volume (GTV) delineation is unknown. This study evaluates the lesion conspicuity and consistency of pancreas stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) GTVs contoured in the different contrast phases of triphasic CT simulation scans.Triphasic, bolus-tracked planning CT simulation scans of 10 consecutive pancreas SBRT patients were acquired, yielding images of the pancreas during the late arterial (LA), portal venous (PV), and either the early arterial or delayed phase. GTVs were contoured on each phase by a gastrointestinal-specialized radiation oncologist and reviewed by a fellowship-trained abdominal radiologist who specializes in pancreatic imaging. The volumes of the registered GTVs, their overlap ratio, and the 3-dimensional margin expansions necessary for each GTV to fully encompass GTVs from the other phases were calculated. The contrast difference between tumor and normal pancreas was measured, and 2 radiation oncologists rank-ordered the phases according to their value for the lesion-contouring task.Tumor-to-pancreas enhancement was on average much larger for the LA and PV than the delayed phase or early arterial phases; the LA and PV phases were also consistently preferred by the radiation oncologists. Enhancement differences among the phases resulted in highly variable GTV volumes with no observed trends. Overlap ratios ranged from 18% to 75% across all 3 phases, improving to 43% to 91% when considering only the preferred LA and PV phases. GTV expansions necessary to encompass all GTVs ranged from 0.3 to 1.8 cm for all 3 phases, improving slightly to 0.1 to 1.4 cm when considering just the LA and PV phases.For pancreas SBRT, we recommend combining the GTVs from a multiphasic CT simulation with bolus-tracking, including, at a minimum, a Boolean "OR" of the LA and PV phases.
Godfrey, DJ; Patel, BN; Adamson, JD; Subashi, E; Salama, JK; Palta, M
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