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Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2011 Apr 1;79(5):1408-13. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2010.01.008. Epub 2010 Jun 3.

Relationship between diseased lung tissues on computed tomography and motion of fiducial marker near lung cancer.

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Department of Radiology, Hokkaido University Hospital, Sapporo, Japan.



For lung cancer patients with poor pulmonary function because of emphysema or fibrosis, it is important to predict the amplitude of internal tumor motion to minimize the irradiation of the functioning lung tissue before undergoing stereotactic body radiotherapy.


Two board-certified diagnostic radiologists independently assessed the degree of pulmonary emphysema and fibrosis on computed tomography scans in 71 patients with peripheral lung tumors before real-time tumor-tracking radiotherapy. The relationships between the computed tomography findings of the lung parenchyma and the motion of the fiducial marker near the lung tumor were investigated. Of the 71 patients, 30 had normal pulmonary function, and 29 had obstructive pulmonary dysfunction (forced expiratory volume in 1 s/forced vital capacity ratio of <70%), 6 patients had constrictive dysfunction (percentage of vital capacity <80%), and 16 had mixed dysfunction.


The upper region was associated with smaller tumor motion, as expected (p = .0004), and the presence of fibrosis (p = .088) and pleural tumor contact (p = .086) were weakly associated with tumor motion. The presence of fibrotic changes in the lung tissue was associated with smaller tumor motion in the upper region (p <.05) but not in the lower region. The findings of emphysema and pulmonary function tests were not associated with tumor motion.


Tumors in the upper lung region with fibrotic changes have smaller motion than those in the upper region of the lungs without fibrotic changes. The tumor motion in the lower lung region was not significantly different between patients with and without lung fibrosis. Emphysema was not associated with the amplitude of tumor motion.

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