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2.  Acceptance criteria for flattening filter-free photon beam from standard medical electron linear accelerator: AERB task group recommendations 
Medical electron linear accelerators with the capability of generating unflat photon (flattening filter-free, FFF) beams are also available commercially for clinical applications in radiotherapy. However, the beam characteristics evaluation criteria and parameters are not yet available for such photon beams. Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) of India constituted a Task Group comprising experts from regulatory agency, advisory body/research and technical institutions, and clinical radiotherapy centers in the country to evolve and recommend the acceptance criteria for the flattening filter-free (FFF) photon beams. The Task Group thoroughly reviewed the literature and inputs of the manufactures/suppliers of the FFF linac and recommended a set of dosimetry parameters for evaluating the characteristics of the unflat photon beam. The recommendations included the evaluation of quality index, degree of unflatness, difference in percentage surface dose between flat and unflat photon beams, percentage depth dose at 10 cm depth, off-axis-ratios and radiation beam penumbra. The recommended parameters were evaluated for FFF photon beams generated by three different models of the linac, and it was observed that recommended evaluation methods are simple and easy to be implemented with the existing dosimetry and quality assurance infrastructure of the linac facilities of the radiotherapy departments. Recommendations were also made for periodic quality control check of the unflat photon beams and constancy evaluation in the beam characteristics.
PMCID: PMC4258727  PMID: 25525307
Flattening filter free; medical accelerator; photon beam; quality assurance; unflat photo beam
3.  Dosimetric impact of number of treatment fields in uniform scanning proton therapy planning of lung cancer 
The main purpose of this study was to perform a treatment planning study for lung cancer comparing 2-field (2F) versus 3-field (3F) techniques in uniform scanning proton therapy (USPT). Ten clinically approved lung cancer treatment plans delivered using USPT at our proton center were included in this retrospective study. All 10 lung cases included 4D computed tomography (CT) simulation. The delineation of target volumes was done based on the maximum intensity projection (MIP) images. Both the 3F and 2F treatment plans were generated for the total dose of 74 cobalt-gray-equivalent (CGE) with a daily dose of 2 CGE. 3F plan was generated by adding an extra beam in the 2F plan. Various dosimetric parameters between 2F and 3F plans were evaluated. 3F plans produced better target coverage and conformality as well as lower mean dose to the lung, with absolute difference between 3F and 2F plans within 2%. In contrast, the addition of third beam led to increase of low-dose regions (V20 and V5) in the lung in 3F plans compared to the ones in 2F plans with absolute difference within 2%. Maximum dose to the spinal cord was lower in 2F plans. Mean dose to the heart and esophagus were comparable in both 3F and 2F plans. In conclusion, the 3F technique in USPT produced better target coverage and conformality, but increased the low-dose regions in the lung when compared to 2F technique.
PMCID: PMC4258728  PMID: 25525308
Dosimetric; lung cancer; proton therapy; treatment planning
4.  Results of 1 year of clinical experience with independent dose calculation software for VMAT fields 
It is widely accepted that a redundant independent dose calculation (RIDC) must be included in any treatment planning verification procedure. Specifically, volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) technique implies a comprehensive quality assurance (QA) program in which RIDC should be included. In this paper, the results obtained in 1 year of clinical experience are presented. Eclipse from Varian is the treatment planning system (TPS), here in use. RIDC were performed with the commercial software; Diamond® (PTW) which is capable of calculating VMAT fields. Once the plan is clinically accepted, it is exported via Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) to RIDC, together with the body contour, and then a point dose calculation is performed, usually at the isocenter. A total of 459 plans were evaluated. The total average deviation was -0.3 ± 1.8% (one standard deviation (1SD)). For higher clearance the plans were grouped by location in: Prostate, pelvis, abdomen, chest, head and neck, brain, stereotactic radiosurgery, lung stereotactic body radiation therapy, and miscellaneous. The highest absolute deviation was -0.8 ± 1.5% corresponding to the prostate. A linear fit between doses calculated by RIDC and by TPS produced a correlation coefficient of 0.9991 and a slope of 1.0023. These results are very close to those obtained in the validation process. This agreement led us to consider this RIDC software as a valuable tool for QA in VMAT plans.
PMCID: PMC4258729  PMID: 25525309
Clinical experience; diamond; redundant independent calculation; VMAT
5.  Neutron dose estimation via LET spectrometry using CR-39 detector for the reaction 9Be (p, n) 
CR-39 detectors, widely used for neutron dosimetry in accelerator radiation environment, have also been applied in tissue microdosimetry by generating the linear energy transfer (LET) spectrum. In this work, the neutron dose has been estimated via LET spectrometry for 9Be (p, n) reaction which is useful for personnel monitoring around particle accelerators and accelerator based therapy facilities. Neutrons were generated by the interaction of protons of 6 different energies from 4–24 MeV with a thick Be target. The LET spectra were obtained from the major and minor radii of each track and the thickness of removed surface. From the LET spectra, the absorbed dose (DLET) and the dose equivalent (HLET) were estimated using Q-L relationship as given by International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) 60. The track density in CR-39 detector and hence the neutron yield was found to be increasing with the increase in projectile (proton) energy. Similar observations were also obtained for absorbed dose (DLET) and dose equivalents (HLET).
PMCID: PMC4258730  PMID: 25525310
LET spectrometry; 9Be (p, n) reaction; CR-39; neutron dosimetry
6.  Influence of increment of gantry angle and number of arcs on esophageal volumetric modulated arc therapy planning in Monaco planning system: A planning study 
The objective of this study was to analyze the influence of the increment of gantry angle and the number of arcs on esophageal volumetric modulated arc therapy plan. All plans were done in Monaco planning system for Elekta Synergy linear accelerator with 80 multileaf collimator (MLC). Volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) plans were done with different increment of gantry angle like 15°, 20°, 30° and 40°. The remaining parameters were similar for all the plans. The results were compared. To compare the plan quality with number of arcs, VMAT plans were done with single and dual arc with increment of gantry angle of 20°. The dose to gross tumor volume (GTV) for 60 Gy and planning target volume (PTV) for 48 Gy was compared. The dosimetric parameters D98%, D95%, D50% and Dmax of GTV were analyzed. The homogeneity index (HI) and conformity index (CI) of GTV were studied and the dose to 98% and 95% of PTV was analyzed. Maximum dose to spinal cord and planning risk volume of cord (PRV cord) was compared. The Volume of lung receiving 10 Gy, 20 Gy and mean dose was analyzed. The volume of heart receiving 30 Gy and 45 Gy was compared. The volume of normal tissue receiving greater than 2 Gy and 5 Gy was compared. The number of monitor units (MU) required to deliver the plans were compared. The plan with larger increment of gantry angle proved to be superior to smaller increment of gantry angle plans in terms of dose coverage, HI, CI and normal tissue sparing. The number of arcs did not make any difference in the quality of the plan.
PMCID: PMC4258731  PMID: 25525311
Esophagus cases; increment of gantry angle; number of arcs; VMAT
7.  Effects of shielding the radiosensitive superficial organs of ORNL pediatric phantoms on dose reduction in computed tomography 
In computed tomography (CT), some superficial organs which have increased sensitivity to radiation, receive doses that are significant enough to be matter of concern. Therefore, in this study, the effects of using shields on the amount of dose reduction and image quality was investigated for pediatric imaging. Absorbed doses of breasts, eyes, thyroid and testes of a series of pediatric phantoms without and with different thickness of bismuth and lead were calculated by Monte Carlo simulation. Appropriate thicknesses of shields were chosen based on their weights, X-ray spectrum, and the amount of dose reduction. In addition, the effect of lead shield on image quality of a simple phantom was assessed quantitatively using region of interest (ROI) measurements. Considering the maximum reduction in absorbed doses and X-ray spectrum, using a lead shield with a maximum thickness of 0.4 mm would be appropriate for testes and thyroid and two other organs (which are exposed directly) should be protected with thinner shields. Moreover, the image quality assessment showed that lead was associated with significant increases in both noise and CT attenuation values, especially in the anterior of the phantom. Overall, the results suggested that shielding is a useful optimization tool in CT.
PMCID: PMC4258732  PMID: 25525312
Image quality; lead and bismuth; Monte Carlo simulation; superficial organs' doses
8.  Dose verification in carcinoma of uterine cervix patients undergoing 3D conformal radiotherapy with Farmer type ion chamber 
External beam radiotherapy (EBRT) for carcinoma of uterine cervix is a basic line of treatment with three dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3DCRT) in large number of patients. There is need for an established method for verification dosimetry. We tried to document absorbed doses in a group of carcinoma cervix patients by inserting a 0.6 cc Farmer type ion chamber in the vaginal cavity. A special long perspex sleeve cap is designed to cover the chamber for using in the patient's body. Response of ionization chamber is checked earlier in water phantom with and without cap. Treatment planning was carried out with X-ray computed tomography (CT) scan and with the chamber along with cap in inserted position, and with the images Xio treatment planning system. Three measurements on 3 days at 5-6 fraction intervals were recorded in 12 patients. Electrometer measured charges are converted to absorbed dose at the chamber center, in vivo. Our results show good agreement with planned dose within 3% against prescribed dose. This study, is a refinement over our previous studies with transmission dosimetry and chemicals in ampules. This preliminary work shows promise that this can be followed as a routine dose check with special relevance to new protocols in the treatment of carcinoma cervix with EBRT.
PMCID: PMC4258733  PMID: 25525313
3D conformal radiotherapy; cancer cervix; dose verification; farmer chamber; in vivo dosimetry; ionization chamber
9.  A simple planning technique of craniospinal irradiation in the eclipse treatment planning system 
A new planning method for Craniospinal Irradiation by Eclipse treatment planning system using Field alignment, Field-in-Field technique was developed. Advantage of this planning method was also studied retrospectively for previously treated five patients of medulloblastoma with variable spine length. Plan consists of half beam blocked parallel opposed cranium, and a single posterior cervicospine field was created by sharing the same isocenter, which obviates divergence matching. Further, a single symmetrical field was created to treat remaining Lumbosacral spine. Matching between a inferior diverging edge of cervicospine field and superior diverging edge of a Lumbosacral field was done using the field alignment option. ′Field alignment′ is specific option in the Eclipse Treatment Planning System, which automatically matches the field edge divergence as per field alignment rule. Multiple segments were applied in both the spine field to manage with hot and cold spots created by varying depth of spinal cord. Plan becomes fully computerized using this field alignment option and multiple segments. Plan evaluation and calculated mean modified Homogeneity Index (1.04 and 0.1) ensured that dose to target volume is homogeneous and critical organ doses were within tolerance. Dose variation at the spinal field junction was verified using ionization chamber array (I′MatriXX) for matched, overlapped and gap junction spine fields; the delivered dose distribution confirmed the ideal clinical match, over exposure and under exposure at the junction, respectively. This method is simple to plan, executable in Record and Verify mode and can be adopted for various length of spinal cord with only two isocenter in shorter treatment time.
PMCID: PMC4258734  PMID: 25525314
Craniospinal irradiation; field alignment; field in field; field matching
12.  Assessment of the dosimetric accuracies of CATPhan 504 and CIRS 062 using kV-CBCT for performing direct calculations 
The dosimetric accuracies of CATPhan 504 and CIRS 062 have been evaluated using the kV-CBCT of Varian TrueBeam linac and Eclipse TPS. The assessment was done using the kV-CBCT as a standalone tool for dosimetric calculations towards Adaptive replanning. Dosimetric calculations were made without altering the HU-ED curves of the planning computed tomography (CT) scanner that is used by the Eclipse TPS. All computations were done using the images and dataset from kV-CBCT while maintaining the HU-ED calibration curve of the planning CT (pCT), assuming pCT was used for the initial treatment plan. Results showed that the CIRS phantom produces doses within ±5% of the CT-based plan while CATPhan 504 produces a variation of ±14% of the CT-based plan.
PMCID: PMC4154180  PMID: 25190991
Adaptive radiotherapy; adaptive replanning; cone beam CT; hounsfield units
13.  Characteristics of mobile MOSFET dosimetry system for megavoltage photon beams 
The characteristics of a mobile metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor (mobile MOSFET) detector for standard bias were investigated for megavoltage photon beams. This study was performed with a brass alloy build-up cap for three energies namely Co-60, 6 and 15 MV photon beams. The MOSFETs were calibrated and the performance characteristics were analyzed with respect to dose rate dependence, energy dependence, field size dependence, linearity, build-up factor, and angular dependence for all the three energies. A linear dose-response curve was noted for Co-60, 6 MV, and 15 MV photons. The calibration factors were found to be 1.03, 1, and 0.79 cGy/mV for Co-60, 6 MV, and 15 MV photon energies, respectively. The calibration graph has been obtained to the dose up to 600 cGy, and the dose-response curve was found to be linear. The MOSFETs were found to be energy independent both for measurements performed at depth as well as on the surface with build-up. However, field size dependence was also analyzed for variable field sizes and found to be field size independent. Angular dependence was analyzed by keeping the MOSFET dosimeter in parallel and perpendicular orientation to the angle of incidence of the radiation with and without build-up on the surface of the phantom. The maximum variation for the three energies was found to be within ± 2% for the gantry angles 90° and 270°, the deviations without the build-up for the same gantry angles were found to be 6%, 25%, and 60%, respectively. The MOSFET response was found to be independent of dose rate for all three energies. The dosimetric characteristics of the MOSFET detector make it a suitable in vivo dosimeter for megavoltage photon beams.
PMCID: PMC4154181  PMID: 25190992
Angular dependence; build-up; dose rate; dosimetry; field size dependence; linearity; metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor; threshold voltage
14.  A dosimetric evaluation of flattening filter-free volumetric modulated arc therapy in nasopharyngeal carcinoma 
To explore the dosimetric effects of flattening filter-free (FFF) beams in volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) of nasopharyngeal carcinoma via a retrospective planning study.
Materials and Methods:
A linear accelerator (LINAC) was prepared to operate in FFF mode and the beam data were collected and used to build a model in TPS. For 10 nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) cases, VMAT plans of FFF beams and normal flattened (FF) beams were designed. Differences of plan quality and delivery efficiency between FFF-VMAT plans and filter filtered VMAT (FF-VMAT) plans were analyzed using two-tailed paired t-tests.
Removal of the flattening filter increased the dose rate. Averaged beam on time (BOT) of FFF-VMAT plans was decreased by 24.2%. Differences of target dose coverage between plans with flattened and unflattened beams were statistically insignificant. For dose to normal organs, up to 4.9% decrease in V35 of parotid grand and 4.5% decrease in averaged normal tissue (NT) dose was observed.
The TPS used in our study was able to handle FFF beams. The FFF beam prone to improve the normal tissue sparing while achieving similar target dose distribution. Decreasing of BOT in NPC cases was valuable in terms of patient's comfort.
PMCID: PMC4154182  PMID: 25190993
Flattening filter-free; nasopharyngeal carcinoma; radiotherapy; volumetric modulated arc therapy
15.  A fast Monte Carlo code for proton transport in radiation therapy based on MCNPX 
An important requirement for proton therapy is a software for dose calculation. Monte Carlo is the most accurate method for dose calculation, but it is very slow. In this work, a method is developed to improve the speed of dose calculation. The method is based on pre-generated tracks for particle transport. The MCNPX code has been used for generation of tracks. A set of data including the track of the particle was produced in each particular material (water, air, lung tissue, bone, and soft tissue). This code can transport protons in wide range of energies (up to 200 MeV for proton). The validity of the fast Monte Carlo (MC) code is evaluated with data MCNPX as a reference code. While analytical pencil beam algorithm transport shows great errors (up to 10%) near small high density heterogeneities, there was less than 2% deviation of MCNPX results in our dose calculation and isodose distribution. In terms of speed, the code runs 200 times faster than MCNPX. In the Fast MC code which is developed in this work, it takes the system less than 2 minutes to calculate dose for 106 particles in an Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66 GHZ desktop computer.
PMCID: PMC4154183  PMID: 25190994
Monte Carlo; proton therapy; treatment planning
16.  Impact of repeat computerized tomography replans in the radiation therapy of head and neck cancers 
Anatomical changes can occur during course of head-and-neck (H and N) radiotherapy like tumor shrinkage, decreased edema and/or weight loss. This can lead to discrepancies in planned and delivered dose increasing the dose to organs at risk. A study was conducted to determine the volumetric and dosimetric changes with the help of repeat computed tomography (CT) and replanning for selected H and N cancer patients treated with IMRT plans to see for these effects. In 15 patients with primary H and N cancer, a repeat CT scan after 3rd week of radiotherapy was done when it was clinically indicated and then two plans were generated on repeat CT scan, actual plan (AP) planned on repeat CT scan, and hybrid plan (HP), which was generated by applying the first intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) plan (including monitoring units) to the images of second CT scan. Both plans (AP and HP) on repeat CT scan were compared for volumetric and dosimetric parameter. The mean variation in volumes between CT and repeat CT were 44.32 cc, 82.2 cc, and 149.83 cc for gross tumor volume (GTV), clinical target volumes (CTV), and planning target volume (PTV), respectively. Mean conformity index and homogeneity index was 0.68 and 1.07, respectively for AP and 0.5 and 1.16, respectively for HP. Mean D95 and D99 of PTV was 97.92% (standard deviation, SD 2.32) and 93.4% (SD 3.75), respectively for AP and 92.8% (SD 3.83) and 82.8% (SD 8.0), respectively for HP. Increase in mean doses to right parotid, left parotid, spine, and brainstem were 5.56 Gy (Dmean), 3.28 Gy (Dmean), 1.25 Gy (Dmax), and 3.88 Gy (Dmax), respectively in HP compared to AP. Repeat CT and replanning reduces the chance of discrepancies in delivered dose due to volume changes and also improves coverage to target volume and further reduces dose to organ at risk.
PMCID: PMC4154184  PMID: 25190995
Actual plan; homogeneity index; hybrid plan; replanning
17.  A combined approach for the enhancement and segmentation of mammograms using modified fuzzy C-means method in wavelet domain 
In this paper, a combined approach for enhancement and segmentation of mammograms is proposed. In preprocessing stage, a contrast limited adaptive histogram equalization (CLAHE) method is applied to obtain the better contrast mammograms. After this, the proposed combined methods are applied. In the first step of the proposed approach, a two dimensional (2D) discrete wavelet transform (DWT) is applied to all the input images. In the second step, a proposed nonlinear complex diffusion based unsharp masking and crispening method is applied on the approximation coefficients of the wavelet transformed images to further highlight the abnormalities such as micro-calcifications, tumours, etc., to reduce the false positives (FPs). Thirdly, a modified fuzzy c-means (FCM) segmentation method is applied on the output of the second step. In the modified FCM method, the mutual information is proposed as a similarity measure in place of conventional Euclidian distance based dissimilarity measure for FCM segmentation. Finally, the inverse 2D-DWT is applied. The efficacy of the proposed unsharp masking and crispening method for image enhancement is evaluated in terms of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and that of the proposed segmentation method is evaluated in terms of random index (RI), global consistency error (GCE), and variation of information (VoI). The performance of the proposed segmentation approach is compared with the other commonly used segmentation approaches such as Otsu's thresholding, texture based, k-means, and FCM clustering as well as thresholding. From the obtained results, it is observed that the proposed segmentation approach performs better and takes lesser processing time in comparison to the standard FCM and other segmentation methods in consideration.
PMCID: PMC4154185  PMID: 25190996
Mammogram segmentation; mammogram enhancement; modified fuzzy c-means segmentation; mutual information; performance evaluation; wavelet based segmentation
18.  Comparison of Head Scatter Factor for 6MV and 10MV flattened (FB) and Unflattened (FFF) Photon Beam using indigenously Designed Columnar Mini Phantom 
To measure and compare the head scatter factor for flattened (FB) and unflattened (FFF) of 6MV and 10MV photon beam using indigenously designed mini phantom. A columnar mini phantom was designed as recommended by AAPM Task Group 74 with low and high atomic number materials at 10 cm (mini phantom) and at approximately twice the depth of maximum dose water equivalent thickness (brass build-up cap). Scatter in the accelerator (Sc) values of 6MV-FFF photon beams are lesser than that of the 6MV-FB photon beams (0.66-2.8%; Clinac iX, 2300CD) and (0.47-1.74%; True beam) for field sizes ranging from 10 × 10 cm2 to 40 × 40 cm2. Sc values of 10MV-FFF photon beams are lesser (0.61-2.19%; True beam) than that of the 10MV-FB photons beams for field sizes ranging from 10 × 10 cm2 to 40 × 40 cm2. The SSD had no influence on head scatter for both flattened and unflattened beams and irrespective of head design of the different linear accelerators. The presence of field shaping device influences the Sc values. The collimator exchange effect reveals that the opening of the upper jaw increases Sc irrespective of FB or FFF photon beams and different linear accelerators, and it is less significant in FFF beams. Sc values of 6MV-FB square field were in good agreement with that of AAPM, TG-74 published data for Varian (Clinac iX, 2300CD) accelerator. Our results confirm that the removal of flattening filter decreases in the head scatter factor compared to flattened beam. This could reduce the out-of-field dose in advanced treatment delivery techniques.
PMCID: PMC4154186  PMID: 25190997
Flattening filter; mini phantom; collimator scatter factor
19.  MRC5 and QU-DB bystander cells can produce bystander factors and induce radiation bystander effect 
Radiation damages initiated by radiation-induced bystander effect (RIBE) are not limited to the first or immediate neighbors of the irradiated cells, but the effects have been observed in the cells far from the irradiation site. It has been postulated that bystander cells, by producing bystander factors, are actively involved in the propagation of bystander effect in the regions beyond the initial irradiated site. Current study was planned to test the hypothesis. MRC5 and QU-DB cell lines were irradiated, and successive medium transfer technique was performed to induce bystander effects in two bystander cell groups. Conditioned medium extracted from the target cells was transferred to the bystander cells (first bystander cells). After one hour, conditioned medium was substituted by fresh medium. Two hours later, the fresh medium was transferred to a second group of non-irradiated cells (second bystander cells). Micronucleated cells (MC) were counted to quantify damages induced in the first and second bystander cell groups. Radiation effect was observed in the second bystander cells as well as in the first ones. Statistical analyses revealed that the number of MC in second bystander subgroups was significantly more than the corresponding value observed in control groups, but in most cases it was equal to the number of MC observed in the first bystander cells. MRC5 and QU-DB bystander cells can produce and release bystander signals in the culture medium and affect non-irradiated cells. Therefore, they may contribute to the RIBE propagation.
PMCID: PMC4154187  PMID: 25190998
Medium transfer; micronucleus assay; MRC5; QU-DB; radiation-induced bystander effect
20.  Dose optimization in gynecological 3D image based interstitial brachytherapy using martinez universal perineal interstitial template (MUPIT) -an institutional experience 
The aim of this study was to evaluate the dose optimization in 3D image based gynecological interstitial brachytherapy using Martinez Universal Perineal Interstitial Template (MUPIT). Axial CT image data set of 20 patients of gynecological cancer who underwent external radiotherapy and high dose rate (HDR) interstitial brachytherapy using MUPIT was employed to delineate clinical target volume (CTV) and organs at risk (OARs). Geometrical and graphical optimization were done for optimum CTV coverage and sparing of OARs. Coverage Index (CI), dose homogeneity index (DHI), overdose index (OI), dose non-uniformity ratio (DNR), external volume index (EI), conformity index (COIN) and dose volume parameters recommended by GEC-ESTRO were evaluated. The mean CTV, bladder and rectum volume were 137 ± 47cc, 106 ± 41cc and 50 ± 25cc, respectively. Mean CI, DHI and DNR were 0.86 ± 0.03, 0.69 ± 0.11 and 0.31 ± 0.09, while the mean OI, EI, and COIN were 0.08 ± 0.03, 0.07 ± 0.05 and 0.79 ± 0.05, respectively. The estimated mean CTV D90 was 76 ± 11Gy and D100 was 63 ± 9Gy. The different dosimetric parameters of bladder D2cc, D1cc and D0.1cc were 76 ± 11Gy, 81 ± 14Gy, and 98 ± 21Gy and of rectum/recto-sigmoid were 80 ± 17Gy, 85 ± 13Gy, and 124 ± 37Gy, respectively. Dose optimization yields superior coverage with optimal values of indices. Emerging data on 3D image based brachytherapy with reporting and clinical correlation of DVH parameters outcome is enterprizing and provides definite assistance in improving the quality of brachytherapy implants. DVH parameter for urethra in gynecological implants needs to be defined further.
PMCID: PMC4154188  PMID: 25190999
Dose volume indices; dose volume parameters; image based interstitial brachytherapy; MUPIT; optimization
21.  Assessments of natural radioactivity and determination of heavy metals in soil around industrial dumpsites in Sango-Ota, Ogun state, Nigeria 
The activity concentration of natural radionuclides in soil samples from industrial dumpsites in Sango-Ota were determined using gamma-ray spectrometry with NaI(Tl) detector. The mean activity concentration of 226Ra, 232Th and 40K was 3.0 ± 1.2, 33.3 ± 9.8 and 122.1 ± 20.6 Bqkg−1, respectively. Radium equivalent activities were calculated to assess the hazards arising from the use of the soil sample in agriculture. All the calculated values were lower than the world average. The mean concentration of heavy metals in the soil samples were 33.6, 2.9, 3.8, 2.7, 48.9, 1,5, 34.5 and 0.8 mg l-1 for Cu, Mg, Ca, P, Fe, Pb, Zn and Cd, respectively. The concentrations of Cd, Cu and Pb were higher than the natural permissible range in soil. Therefore, the government should discourage the use of the soil around dumpsites for planting because of the presence of heavy metals in the sites.
PMCID: PMC4035613  PMID: 24872608
Dumpsites; heavy metals; Ota; radiation; radionuclides
22.  A study of photon interaction parameters in lung tissue substitutes 
The study of photon interaction with different composite materials has become a topic of prime importance for radiation physicists. Some parameters of dosimetric interest are the mass attenuation coefficient, effective atomic number, and electron density; these help in the basic understanding of photon interactions with composite materials. The photon interaction parameters such as mass attenuation coefficient (μ/ρ), effective atomic number (Zeff), and effective electron density (Nel) must be identical for the phantom material and their tissue. In the present study, we have evaluated the photon interaction parameters such as (μ/ρ), Zeff and Nel of 13 lung tissue substitutes. The variations of these parameters of lung tissue substitutes with photon energy are graphically represented. The photon interaction parameters of lung tissue substitutes are compared with that of lung tissue. The variation of photon interaction parameters of the studied lung tissue substitutes is similar that of the lung. Logically, it can be shown that Alderson lung is good substitute for lung than the other substitutes.
PMCID: PMC4035614  PMID: 24872609
Breast; lung; muscle; tissue substitutes
23.  Implementation of a program for quality assurance on leaf positioning accuracy using Gafchromic® RTQA2 films 
In radiotherapy treatments the correct dose delivery to the target volume and the consequent conservation of healthy tissues is affected by multileaf collimator (MLC) leaf positioning accuracy and reproducibility, mostly in intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT): For this reason a quality assurance (QA) program is necessary to ensure the best treatment possible to each patient. The aim of this study is the implementation of a method using Gafchromic® RTQA 2 films to perform routine QA on the MLC, both for qualitative and quantitative analysis. A flatbed document scanner (Epson 10000XL) was used in conjunction with radiochromic detector; a scanning protocol was firstly defined to improve readout accuracy. RTQA2 films were irradiated with 6 MV X-rays at different dose levels to obtain calibration curve. To evaluate the leaf positioning accuracy in different conditions, a rhomboidal shape and a field consisting in three rectangular segments were selected. The images quantitative analysis was handled with a program developed in MATLAB to evaluate the differences between expected and measured leaves positions. The reproducibility and global uncertainty of the method were estimated to be equal to 0.5% and 0.6 mm, respectively. Moreover, a qualitative test was performed: A garden picket fence field, consisting in multiple segments 2 × 22 cm2, was realized setting known leaves shifts to test the method sensitivity. The picket fence test shows that the method is able to detect displacements equal to 1 mm. The results suggest that Gafchromic® RTQA2 films represent a reliable tool to perform MLC routine QA.
PMCID: PMC4035615  PMID: 24872610
Film; gafchromic; IMRT; MLC; quality assurance; RTQA
24.  Comparative analysis of volumetric-modulated arc therapy and intensity-modulated radiotherapy for base of tongue cancer 
The aim of this study was to compare the various dosimetric parameters of dynamic multileaf collimator (MLC) intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) plans with volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) plans for base of tongue cases. All plans were done in Monaco planning system for Elekta synergy linear accelerator with 80 MLC. IMRT plans were planned with nine stationary beams, and VMAT plans were done for 360° arc with single arc or dual arc. The dose to the planning target volumes (PTV) for 70, 63, and 56 Gy was compared. The dose to 95, 98, and 50% volume of PTV were analyzed. The homogeneity index (HI) and the conformity index (CI) of the PTV70 were also analyzed. IMRT and VMAT plan showed similar dose coverage, HI, and CI. Maximum dose and dose to 1-cc volume of spinal cord, planning risk volume (PRV) cord, and brain stem were compared. IMRT plan and VMAT plan showed similar results except for the 1 cc of PRV cord that received slightly higher dose in VMAT plan. Mean dose and dose to 50% volume of right and left parotid glands were analyzed. VMAT plan gave better sparing of parotid glands than IMRT. In normal tissue dose analyses VMAT was better than IMRT. The number of monitor units (MU) required for delivering the good quality of the plan and the time required to deliver the plan for IMRT and VMAT were compared. The number of MUs for VMAT was higher than that of IMRT plans. However, the delivery time was reduced by a factor of two for VMAT compared with IMRT. VMAT plans yielded good quality of the plan compared with IMRT, resulting in reduced treatment time and improved efficiency for base of tongue cases.
PMCID: PMC4035616  PMID: 24872611
Base of tongue; intensity-modulated radiation therapy; volumetric modulated arc therapy

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