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Phys Med Biol. 2014 May 7;59(9):N49-63. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/59/9/N49. Epub 2014 Apr 15.

Monitoring daily MLC positional errors using trajectory log files and EPID measurements for IMRT and VMAT deliveries.

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Radiotherapy Physics, Northern Ireland Cancer Centre, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland, BT9 7AB, UK.


This work investigated the differences between multileaf collimator (MLC) positioning accuracy determined using either log files or electronic portal imaging devices (EPID) and then assessed the possibility of reducing patient specific quality control (QC) via phantom-less methodologies. In-house software was developed, and validated, to track MLC positional accuracy with the rotational and static gantry picket fence tests using an integrated electronic portal image. This software was used to monitor MLC daily performance over a 1 year period for two Varian TrueBeam linear accelerators, with the results directly compared with MLC positions determined using leaf trajectory log files. This software was validated by introducing known shifts and collimator errors. Skewness of the MLCs was found to be 0.03 ± 0.06° (mean ±1 standard deviation (SD)) and was dependent on whether the collimator was rotated manually or automatically. Trajectory log files, analysed using in-house software, showed average MLC positioning errors with a magnitude of 0.004 ± 0.003 mm (rotational) and 0.004 ± 0.011 mm (static) across two TrueBeam units over 1 year (mean ±1 SD). These ranges, as indicated by the SD, were lower than the related average MLC positioning errors of 0.000 ± 0.025 mm (rotational) and 0.000 ± 0.039 mm (static) that were obtained using the in-house EPID based software. The range of EPID measured MLC positional errors was larger due to the inherent uncertainties of the procedure. Over the duration of the study, multiple MLC positional errors were detected using the EPID based software but these same errors were not detected using the trajectory log files. This work shows the importance of increasing linac specific QC when phantom-less methodologies, such as the use of log files, are used to reduce patient specific QC. Tolerances of 0.25 mm have been created for the MLC positional errors using the EPID-based automated picket fence test. The software allows diagnosis of any specific leaf that needs repair and gives an indication as to the course of action that is required.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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