Radiosurgery treatment planning using conformal arc informed volumetric modulated arc therapy.
Linac based radiosurgery to multiple metastases is commonly planned with volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) as it effectively achieves high conformality to complex target arrangements. However, as the number of targets increases, VMAT can struggle to block between targets, which can lead to highly modulated and/or nonconformal multi-leaf collimator (MLC) trajectories that unnecessarily irradiation of healthy tissue. In this study we introduce, describe, and evaluate a treatment planning technique called Conformal Arc Informed VMAT (CAVMAT), which aims to reduce the dose to healthy tissue while generating highly conformal treatment plans. CAVMAT is a hybrid technique which combines the conformal MLC trajectories of dynamic conformal arcs with the MLC modulation and versatility of inverse optimization. CAVMAT has 3 main steps. First, targets are assigned to subgroups to maximize MLC blocking between targets. Second, arc weights are optimized to achieve the desired target dose, while minimizing MU variation between arcs. Third, the optimized conformal arc plan serves as the starting point for limited inverse optimization to improve dose conformity to each target. Twenty multifocal VMAT cases were replanned with CAVMAT with 20Gy applied to each target. The total volume receiving 2.5Gy[cm3], 6Gy[cm3], 12Gy[cm3], and 16Gy[cm3], conformity index, treatment delivery time, and the total MU were used to compare the VMAT and CAVMAT plans. In addition, CAVMAT was compared to a broad range of planning strategies from various institutions (108 linear accelerator based plans, 14 plans using other modalities) for a 5-target case utilized in a recent plan challenge. For the linear accelerator-based plans, a plan complexity metric based on aperture opening area and perimeter, total monitor units (MU), and MU for a given aperture opening was utilized in the plan challenge scoring algorithm to compare the submitted plans to CAVMAT. After re-planning the 20 VMAT cases, CAVMAT reduced the average V2.5Gy[cm3] by 25.25 ± 19.23%, V6Gy[cm3] by 13.68 ± 18.97%, V12Gy[cm3] by 11.40 ± 19.44%, and V16Gy[cm3] by 6.38 ± 19.11%. CAVMAT improved conformity by 3.81 ± 7.57%, while maintaining comparable target dose. MU for the CAVMAT plans increased by 24.35 ± 24.66%, leading to an increased treatment time of 2 minutes. For the plan challenge case, CAVMAT was 1 of 12 linac based plans that met all plan challenge scoring criteria. Compared to the average submitted VMAT plan, CAVMAT increased the V10%Gy[%] of healthy tissue (Brain-PTV) by roughly 3.42%, but in doing so was able to reduce the V25%Gy[%] by roughly 3.73%, while also reducing V50%Gy[%], V75%Gy[%], and V100%Gy[%]. The CAVMAT technique successfully eliminated insufficient MLC blocking between targets prior to the inverse optimization, leading to less complex treatment plans and improved tissue sparing. Tissue sparing, improved conformity, and decreased plan complexity at the cost of slight increase in treatment delivery time indicates CAVMAT to be a promising method to treat brain metastases.
Giles, WM; Cullom, ET; Laryea, OA-O; Nobah, A; Alves, VGL; Yin, F-F; Kirkpatrick, JP; Adamson, JD
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