Volume 46, Issue 12 p. 5816-5823
Research Article

Calculation of clinical dose distributions in proton therapy from microdosimetry

Alejandro Bertolet

Alejandro Bertolet

Department of Radiation Oncology, Hospital of The University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 19104 USA

Department of Atomic, Molecular and Nuclear Physics, Universidad de Sevilla, Seville, 41080 Spain

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Miguel Antonio Cortés-Giraldo

Miguel Antonio Cortés-Giraldo

Department of Atomic, Molecular and Nuclear Physics, Universidad de Sevilla, Seville, 41080 Spain

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Kevin Souris

Kevin Souris

Center for Molecular Imaging and Experimental Radiotherapy, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain, Belgium

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Marie Cohilis

Marie Cohilis

Center for Molecular Imaging and Experimental Radiotherapy, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain, Belgium

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Alejandro Carabe-Fernandez

Corresponding Author

Alejandro Carabe-Fernandez

Department of Radiation Oncology, Hospital of The University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 19104 USA

Author to whom correspondence should be addressed. Electronic mails: [email protected]; [email protected].

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First published: 11 October 2019
Citations: 8

Abstract

Purpose

To introduce a new algorithm—MicroCalc—for dose calculation by modeling microdosimetric energy depositions and the spectral fluence at each point of a particle beam. Proton beams are considered as a particular case of the general methodology. By comparing the results obtained against Monte Carlo computations, we aim to validate the microdosimetric formalism presented here and in previous works.

Materials and methods

In previous works, we developed a function on the energy for the average energy imparted to a microdosimetric site per event and a model to compute the energetic spectrum at each point of the patient image. The number of events in a voxel is estimated assuming a model in which the voxel is completely filled by microdosimetric sites. Then, dose at every voxel is computed by integrating the average energy imparted per event multiplied by the number of events per energy beam of the spectral distribution within the voxel. Our method is compared with the proton convolution superposition (PCS) algorithm implemented in Eclipse™ and the fast Monte Carlo code MCsquare, which is here considered the benchmark, for in-water calculations, using in both cases clinically validated beam data. Two clinical cases are considered: a brain and a prostate case.

Results

For a SOBP beam in water, the mean difference at the central axis found for MicroCalc is of 0.86% against 1.03% for PCS. Three-dimensional gamma analyses in the PTVs compared with MCsquare for criterion (3%, 3 mm) provide gamma index of 95.07% with MicroCalc vs 94.50% with PCS for the brain case and 99.90% vs 100.00%, respectively, for the prostate case. For selected organs at risk in each case (brainstem and rectum), mean and maximum difference with respect to MCsquare dose are analyzed. In the brainstem, mean differences are 0.25 Gy (MicroCalc) vs 0.56 Gy (PCS), whereas for the rectum, these values are 0.05 Gy (MicroCalc) vs 0.07 Gy (PCS).

Conclusions

The accuracy of MicroCalc seems to be, at least, not inferior to PCS, showing similar or better agreement with MCsquare in the considered cases. Additionally, the algorithm enables simultaneous computation of other quantities of interest. These results seem to validate the microdosimetric methodology in which the algorithm is based on.