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Radiother Oncol. 2013 Dec;109(3):475-81. doi: 10.1016/j.radonc.2013.10.031. Epub 2013 Nov 11.

Trajectory modulated prone breast irradiation: a LINAC-based technique combining intensity modulated delivery and motion of the couch.

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  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Stanford University, United States.



External beam radiation therapy (EBRT) provides a non-invasive treatment alternative for accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI), however, limitations in achievable dose conformity of current EBRT techniques have been correlated to reported toxicity. To enhance the conformity of EBRT APBI, a technique for conventional LINACs is developed, which through combined motion of the couch, intensity modulated delivery, and a prone breast setup, enables wide-angular coronal arc irradiation of the ipsilateral breast without irradiating through the thorax and contralateral breast.


A couch trajectory optimization technique was developed to determine the trajectories that concurrently avoid collision with the LINAC and maintain the target within the MLC apertures. Inverse treatment planning was performed along the derived trajectory. The technique was experimentally implemented by programming the Varian TrueBeamâ„¢ STx in Developer Mode. The dosimetric accuracy of the delivery was evaluated by ion chamber and film measurements in phantom.


The resulting optimized trajectory was shown to be necessarily non-isocentric, and contain both translation and rotations of the couch. Film measurements resulted in 93% of the points in the measured two-dimensional dose maps passing the 3%/3mm Gamma criterion. Preliminary treatment plan comparison to 5-field 3D-conformal, IMRT, and VMAT demonstrated enhancement in conformity, and reduction of the normal tissue V50% and V100% parameters that have been correlated with EBRT toxicity.


The feasibility of wide-angular intensity modulated partial breast irradiation using motion of the couch has been demonstrated experimentally on a standard LINAC for the first time. For patients eligible for a prone setup, the technique may enable improvement of dose conformity and associated dose-volume parameters correlated with toxicity.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.


Accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI); Couch motion; IMRT; Trajectory modulated arc therapy (TMAT)

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