Send to

Choose Destination
Cancer Radiother. 2010 Jun;14(3):189-97. doi: 10.1016/j.canrad.2010.03.002.

[Statistical process control applied to intensity modulated radiotherapy pretreatment controls with portal dosimetry].

[Article in French]

Author information

CRAN UMR, Nancy université-CNRS, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy, France. <>



The first purpose of this study was to illustrate the contribution of statistical process control for a better security in intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) treatments. This improvement is possible by controlling the dose delivery process, characterized by pretreatment quality control results. So, it is necessary to put under control portal dosimetry measurements (currently, the ionisation chamber measurements were already monitored by statistical process control thanks to statistical process control tools). The second objective was to state whether it is possible to substitute ionisation chamber with portal dosimetry in order to optimize time devoted to pretreatment quality control.


At Alexis-Vautrin center, pretreatment quality controls in IMRT for prostate and head and neck treatments were performed for each beam of each patient. These controls were made with an ionisation chamber, which is the reference detector for the absolute dose measurement, and with portal dosimetry for the verification of dose distribution. Statistical process control is a statistical analysis method, coming from industry, used to control and improve the studied process quality. It uses graphic tools as control maps to follow-up process, warning the operator in case of failure, and quantitative tools to evaluate the process toward its ability to respect guidelines: this is the capability study. The study was performed on 450 head and neck beams and on 100 prostate beams.


Control charts, showing drifts, both slow and weak, and also both strong and fast, of mean and standard deviation have been established and have shown special cause introduced (manual shift of the leaf gap of the multileaf collimator). Correlation between dose measured at one point, given with the EPID and the ionisation chamber has been evaluated at more than 97% and disagreement cases between the two measurements were identified.


The study allowed to demonstrate the feasibility to reduce the time devoted to pretreatment controls, by substituting the ionisation chamber's measurements with those performed with EPID, and also that a statistical process control monitoring of data brought security guarantee.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center