To evaluate the accuracy of pencil beam calculation (PBC) and Monte Carlo calculation (MCC) for dynamic arc therapy (DAT) in a cylindrically shaped homogenous phantom, by comparing the two plans with an ion chamber, a film and a three-dimensional (3D) volumetric dosemeter.
For this study, an in-house phantom was constructed, and the PBC and MCC plans for DAT were performed using iPlan® RT (BrainLAB®, Heimstetten, Germany). The A16 micro ion chamber (Standard Imaging, Middleton, WI), Gafchromic® EBT2 film (International Specialty Products, Wayne, NJ) and ArcCHECK™ (Sun Nuclear, Melbourne, FL) were used for measurements. For comparison with each plan, two-dimensional (2D) and 3D gamma analyses were performed using 3%/3 mm and 2%/2 mm criteria.
The difference between the PBC and MCC plans using 2D and 3D gamma analyses was found to be 7.85% and 28.8%, respectively. The ion chamber and 2D dose distribution measurements did not exhibit this difference revealed by the comparison between the PBC and MCC plans. However, the 3D assessment showed a significant difference between the PBC and MCC (62.7% for PBC vs 93.4% for MCC, p = 0.034).
Evaluation using a 3D volumetric dosemeter can be clinically useful for delivery quality assurance (QA), and the MCC should be used to achieve the most reliable dose calculation for DAT.
Advances in knowledge:
(1) The DAT plan calculated using the PBC has a limitation in the calculation methods, and a 3D volumetric dosemeter was found to be an adequate tool for delivery QA of DAT. (2) The MCC was superior to PBC in terms of the accuracy in dose calculation for DAT even in the homogenous condition.