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Robust Proton Treatment Planning: Physical and Biological Optimization


Unkelbach, Jan; Paganetti, Harald (2018). Robust Proton Treatment Planning: Physical and Biological Optimization. Seminars in Radiation Oncology, 28(2):88-96.

Abstract

Accurate prediction of tumor control and toxicities in radiation therapy faces many uncertainties. Besides interpatient variability in the response to radiation, there are also dosimetric uncertainties, that is, differences between the dose displayed in a treatment planning system and the dose actually delivered to the patient. These uncertainties originate from several sources including imperfect knowledge of the patient geometry, approximation in the physics of radiation interaction with tissues, and uncertainties in the biological effectiveness of radiation. Generally, uncertainties are considered in the treatment planning process by applying margins. In intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), this leads to the planning target volume (PTV) concept. Intensity-modulated proton therapy (IMPT) is widely considered as the future of proton therapy. The treatment planning methods for IMPT and IMRT are similar and based on mathematical optimization techniques for both modalities. However, the PTV concept has fundamental limitations in IMPT. Therefore, researchers have developed robust optimization methods that directly incorporate uncertainties into the IMPT optimization problem. In recent years, vendors of commercial planning systems have started to implement these methods so that robust IMPT planning becomes available in clinical practice. This article summarizes uncertainties in proton therapy and the limitations of the PTV concept to deal with them. Subsequently, robust optimization techniques to overcome these limitations are reviewed.

Abstract

Accurate prediction of tumor control and toxicities in radiation therapy faces many uncertainties. Besides interpatient variability in the response to radiation, there are also dosimetric uncertainties, that is, differences between the dose displayed in a treatment planning system and the dose actually delivered to the patient. These uncertainties originate from several sources including imperfect knowledge of the patient geometry, approximation in the physics of radiation interaction with tissues, and uncertainties in the biological effectiveness of radiation. Generally, uncertainties are considered in the treatment planning process by applying margins. In intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), this leads to the planning target volume (PTV) concept. Intensity-modulated proton therapy (IMPT) is widely considered as the future of proton therapy. The treatment planning methods for IMPT and IMRT are similar and based on mathematical optimization techniques for both modalities. However, the PTV concept has fundamental limitations in IMPT. Therefore, researchers have developed robust optimization methods that directly incorporate uncertainties into the IMPT optimization problem. In recent years, vendors of commercial planning systems have started to implement these methods so that robust IMPT planning becomes available in clinical practice. This article summarizes uncertainties in proton therapy and the limitations of the PTV concept to deal with them. Subsequently, robust optimization techniques to overcome these limitations are reviewed.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Radiation Oncology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:April 2018
Deposited On:06 Mar 2019 16:23
Last Modified:25 Sep 2019 00:08
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1053-4296
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.semradonc.2017.11.005
PubMed ID:29735195

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