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J Appl Clin Med Phys. 2011 Jan 30;12(2):3421.

Role of adaptive radiation therapy for pediatric patients with diffuse pontine glioma.

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Department of Radiological Sciences, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN 38120, USA.


We investigate the role of adaptive radiation therapy in pediatric patients with diffuse pontine glioma and the impact of steroid-related weight gain on treatment parameters utilizing cone-beam CT. Fifteen patients with diffuse pontine glioma were treated with three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy and enrolled on a daily localization protocol. The median age was 6 years (range: 2-13 years). Patient charts were examined to obtain the prescribed daily dose of dexamethasone and weight. The original treatment plan was recalculated based on the data obtained from the daily cone-beam CT. The changes in target and critical structure doses were calculated using gEUD. Correlations between prescribed dexamethasone, weight gain, source-to-skin distance (SSD) changes and dosimetric changes were investigated. Eleven of the 15 patients gained weight during radiation therapy, with an average gain of 2.2 kg (8.0%). The mean gEUD decreased was 0.57 Gy (range: 0.24-1.4 Gy) for the PTV, and the mean gEUD increase for critical structures was 1.14%. No strong correlations between prescribed dexamethasone doses, weight gain and dosimetric changes were found. Change in SSD vs. dose to PTV was correlated (R² = 0.51). Weight gain and changes to the external surface are apparent in these patients; however, the dosimetric changes to the target and critical structures were small and in most cases did not warrant an adaptive plan. The potential exists for a decrease in target dose in these patients; therefore, they should be monitored to assess for replanning when necessary.

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