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Phys Med Biol. 2013 Feb 21;58(4):N47-58. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/58/4/N47. Epub 2013 Feb 1.

Consistency evaluation between EGSnrc and Geant4 charged particle transport in an equilibrium magnetic field.

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Department of Medical Physics, Wisconsin Institutes for Medical Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53703, USA.


Following the proposal by several groups to integrate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with radiation therapy, much attention has been afforded to examining the impact of strong (on the order of a Tesla) transverse magnetic fields on photon dose distributions. The effect of the magnetic field on dose distributions must be considered in order to take full advantage of the benefits of real-time intra-fraction imaging. In this investigation, we compared the handling of particle transport in magnetic fields between two Monte Carlo codes, EGSnrc and Geant4, to analyze various aspects of their electromagnetic transport algorithms; both codes are well-benchmarked for medical physics applications in the absence of magnetic fields. A water-air-water slab phantom and a water-lung-water slab phantom were used to highlight dose perturbations near high- and low-density interfaces. We have implemented a method of calculating the Lorentz force in EGSnrc based on theoretical models in literature, and show very good consistency between the two Monte Carlo codes. This investigation further demonstrates the importance of accurate dosimetry for MRI-guided radiation therapy (MRIgRT), and facilitates the integration of a ViewRay MRIgRT system in the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Radiation Oncology Department.

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