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Title: Automatic tracking of arbitrarily shaped implanted markers in kilovoltage projection images: A feasibility study

Abstract

Purpose: Certain types of commonly used fiducial markers take on irregular shapes upon implantation in soft tissue. This poses a challenge for methods that assume a predefined shape of markers when automatically tracking such markers in kilovoltage (kV) radiographs. The authors have developed a method of automatically tracking regularly and irregularly shaped markers using kV projection images and assessed its potential for detecting intrafractional target motion during rotational treatment. Methods: Template-based matching used a normalized cross-correlation with simplex minimization. Templates were created from computed tomography (CT) images for phantom studies and from end-expiration breath-hold planning CT for patient studies. The kV images were processed using a Sobel filter to enhance marker visibility. To correct for changes in intermarker relative positions between simulation and treatment that can introduce errors in automatic matching, marker offsets in three dimensions were manually determined from an approximately orthogonal pair of kV images. Two studies in anthropomorphic phantom were carried out, one using a gold cylindrical marker representing regular shape, another using a Visicoil marker representing irregular shape. Automatic matching of templates to cone beam CT (CBCT) projection images was performed to known marker positions in phantom. In patient data, automatic matching was compared to manualmore » matching as an approximate ground truth. Positional discrepancy between automatic and manual matching of less than 2 mm was assumed as the criterion for successful tracking. Tracking success rates were examined in kV projection images from 22 CBCT scans of four pancreas, six gastroesophageal junction, and one lung cancer patients. Each patient had at least one irregularly shaped radiopaque marker implanted in or near the tumor. In addition, automatic tracking was tested in intrafraction kV images of three lung cancer patients with irregularly shaped markers during 11 volumetric modulated arc treatments. Purpose-built software developed at our institution was used to create marker templates and track the markers embedded in kV images. Results: Phantom studies showed mean ± standard deviation measurement uncertainty of automatic registration to be 0.14 ± 0.07 mm and 0.17 ± 0.08 mm for Visicoil and gold cylindrical markers, respectively. The mean success rate of automatic tracking with CBCT projections (11 frames per second, fps) of pancreas, gastroesophageal junction, and lung cancer patients was 100%, 99.1% (range 98%–100%), and 100%, respectively. With intrafraction images (approx. 0.2 fps) of lung cancer patients, the success rate was 98.2% (range 97%–100%), and 94.3% (range 93%–97%) using templates from 1.25 mm and 2.5 mm slice spacing CT scans, respectively. Correction of intermarker relative position was found to improve the success rate in two out of eight patients analyzed. Conclusions: The proposed method can track arbitrary marker shapes in kV images using templates generated from a breath-hold CT acquired at simulation. The studies indicate its feasibility for tracking tumor motion during rotational treatment. Investigation of the causes of misregistration suggests that its rate of incidence can be reduced with higher frequency of image acquisition, templates made from smaller CT slice spacing, and correction of changes in intermarker relative positions when they occur.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ;  [1]; ;  [2];  [3]
  1. Department of Medical Physics, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York 10065 (United States)
  2. Department of Radiation Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York 10065 (United States)
  3. Ginzton Technology Center, Varian Medical Systems, Palo Alto, California 94304 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22412482
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Medical Physics; Journal Volume: 41; Journal Issue: 7; Other Information: (c) 2014 American Association of Physicists in Medicine; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; CAT SCANNING; FEASIBILITY STUDIES; FIDUCIAL MARKERS; GOLD; LUNGS; NEOPLASMS; PANCREAS; PATIENTS; PHANTOMS; PLANNING; RESPIRATION

Citation Formats

Regmi, Rajesh, Lovelock, D. Michael, Hunt, Margie, Zhang, Pengpeng, Pham, Hai, Xiong, Jianping, Yorke, Ellen D., Mageras, Gig S., E-mail: magerasg@mskcc.org, Goodman, Karyn A., Rimner, Andreas, and Mostafavi, Hassan. Automatic tracking of arbitrarily shaped implanted markers in kilovoltage projection images: A feasibility study. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.1118/1.4881335.
Regmi, Rajesh, Lovelock, D. Michael, Hunt, Margie, Zhang, Pengpeng, Pham, Hai, Xiong, Jianping, Yorke, Ellen D., Mageras, Gig S., E-mail: magerasg@mskcc.org, Goodman, Karyn A., Rimner, Andreas, & Mostafavi, Hassan. Automatic tracking of arbitrarily shaped implanted markers in kilovoltage projection images: A feasibility study. United States. doi:10.1118/1.4881335.
Regmi, Rajesh, Lovelock, D. Michael, Hunt, Margie, Zhang, Pengpeng, Pham, Hai, Xiong, Jianping, Yorke, Ellen D., Mageras, Gig S., E-mail: magerasg@mskcc.org, Goodman, Karyn A., Rimner, Andreas, and Mostafavi, Hassan. Tue . "Automatic tracking of arbitrarily shaped implanted markers in kilovoltage projection images: A feasibility study". United States. doi:10.1118/1.4881335.
@article{osti_22412482,
title = {Automatic tracking of arbitrarily shaped implanted markers in kilovoltage projection images: A feasibility study},
author = {Regmi, Rajesh and Lovelock, D. Michael and Hunt, Margie and Zhang, Pengpeng and Pham, Hai and Xiong, Jianping and Yorke, Ellen D. and Mageras, Gig S., E-mail: magerasg@mskcc.org and Goodman, Karyn A. and Rimner, Andreas and Mostafavi, Hassan},
abstractNote = {Purpose: Certain types of commonly used fiducial markers take on irregular shapes upon implantation in soft tissue. This poses a challenge for methods that assume a predefined shape of markers when automatically tracking such markers in kilovoltage (kV) radiographs. The authors have developed a method of automatically tracking regularly and irregularly shaped markers using kV projection images and assessed its potential for detecting intrafractional target motion during rotational treatment. Methods: Template-based matching used a normalized cross-correlation with simplex minimization. Templates were created from computed tomography (CT) images for phantom studies and from end-expiration breath-hold planning CT for patient studies. The kV images were processed using a Sobel filter to enhance marker visibility. To correct for changes in intermarker relative positions between simulation and treatment that can introduce errors in automatic matching, marker offsets in three dimensions were manually determined from an approximately orthogonal pair of kV images. Two studies in anthropomorphic phantom were carried out, one using a gold cylindrical marker representing regular shape, another using a Visicoil marker representing irregular shape. Automatic matching of templates to cone beam CT (CBCT) projection images was performed to known marker positions in phantom. In patient data, automatic matching was compared to manual matching as an approximate ground truth. Positional discrepancy between automatic and manual matching of less than 2 mm was assumed as the criterion for successful tracking. Tracking success rates were examined in kV projection images from 22 CBCT scans of four pancreas, six gastroesophageal junction, and one lung cancer patients. Each patient had at least one irregularly shaped radiopaque marker implanted in or near the tumor. In addition, automatic tracking was tested in intrafraction kV images of three lung cancer patients with irregularly shaped markers during 11 volumetric modulated arc treatments. Purpose-built software developed at our institution was used to create marker templates and track the markers embedded in kV images. Results: Phantom studies showed mean ± standard deviation measurement uncertainty of automatic registration to be 0.14 ± 0.07 mm and 0.17 ± 0.08 mm for Visicoil and gold cylindrical markers, respectively. The mean success rate of automatic tracking with CBCT projections (11 frames per second, fps) of pancreas, gastroesophageal junction, and lung cancer patients was 100%, 99.1% (range 98%–100%), and 100%, respectively. With intrafraction images (approx. 0.2 fps) of lung cancer patients, the success rate was 98.2% (range 97%–100%), and 94.3% (range 93%–97%) using templates from 1.25 mm and 2.5 mm slice spacing CT scans, respectively. Correction of intermarker relative position was found to improve the success rate in two out of eight patients analyzed. Conclusions: The proposed method can track arbitrary marker shapes in kV images using templates generated from a breath-hold CT acquired at simulation. The studies indicate its feasibility for tracking tumor motion during rotational treatment. Investigation of the causes of misregistration suggests that its rate of incidence can be reduced with higher frequency of image acquisition, templates made from smaller CT slice spacing, and correction of changes in intermarker relative positions when they occur.},
doi = {10.1118/1.4881335},
journal = {Medical Physics},
number = 7,
volume = 41,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue Jul 15 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Tue Jul 15 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}
  • Purpose: This paper describes a novel method for simultaneous intrafraction tracking of multiple fiducial markers. Although the proposed method is generic and can be adopted for a number of applications including fluoroscopy based patient position monitoring and gated radiotherapy, the tracking results presented in this paper are specific to tracking fiducial markers in a sequence of cone beam CT projection images. Methods: The proposed method is accurate and robust thanks to utilizing the mean shift and random sampling principles, respectively. The performance of the proposed method was evaluated with qualitative and quantitative methods, using data from two pancreatic and onemore » prostate cancer patients and a moving phantom. The ground truth, for quantitative evaluation, was calculated based on manual tracking preformed by three observers. Results: The average dispersion of marker position error calculated from the tracking results for pancreas data (six markers tracked over 640 frames, 3840 marker identifications) was 0.25 mm (at iscoenter), compared with an average dispersion for the manual ground truth estimated at 0.22 mm. For prostate data (three markers tracked over 366 frames, 1098 marker identifications), the average error was 0.34 mm. The estimated tracking error in the pancreas data was < 1 mm (2 pixels) in 97.6% of cases where nearby image clutter was detected and in 100.0% of cases with no nearby image clutter. Conclusions: The proposed method has accuracy comparable to that of manual tracking and, in combination with the proposed batch postprocessing, superior robustness. Marker tracking in cone beam CT (CBCT) projections is useful for a variety of purposes, such as providing data for assessment of intrafraction motion, target tracking during rotational treatment delivery, motion correction of CBCT, and phase sorting for 4D CBCT.« less
  • Purpose: To develop a markerless tracking algorithm to track the tumor boundary in megavoltage (MV)-electronic portal imaging device (EPID) images for image-guided radiation therapy. Methods: A level set method (LSM)-based algorithm is developed to track tumor boundary in EPID image sequences. Given an EPID image sequence, an initial curve is manually specified in the first frame. Driven by a region-scalable energy fitting function, the initial curve automatically evolves toward the tumor boundary and stops on the desired boundary while the energy function reaches its minimum. For the subsequent frames, the tracking algorithm updates the initial curve by using the trackingmore » result in the previous frame and reuses the LSM to detect the tumor boundary in the subsequent frame so that the tracking processing can be continued without user intervention. The tracking algorithm is tested on three image datasets, including a 4-D phantom EPID image sequence, four digitally deformable phantom image sequences with different noise levels, and four clinical EPID image sequences acquired in lung cancer treatment. The tracking accuracy is evaluated based on two metrics: centroid localization error (CLE) and volume overlap index (VOI) between the tracking result and the ground truth. Results: For the 4-D phantom image sequence, the CLE is 0.23 ± 0.20 mm, and VOI is 95.6% ± 0.2%. For the digital phantom image sequences, the total CLE and VOI are 0.11 ± 0.08 mm and 96.7% ± 0.7%, respectively. In addition, for the clinical EPID image sequences, the proposed algorithm achieves 0.32 ± 0.77 mm in the CLE and 72.1% ± 5.5% in the VOI. These results demonstrate the effectiveness of the authors’ proposed method both in tumor localization and boundary tracking in EPID images. In addition, compared with two existing tracking algorithms, the proposed method achieves a higher accuracy in tumor localization. Conclusions: In this paper, the authors presented a feasibility study of tracking tumor boundary in EPID images by using a LSM-based algorithm. Experimental results conducted on phantom and clinical EPID images demonstrated the effectiveness of the tracking algorithm for visible tumor target. Compared with previous tracking methods, the authors’ algorithm has the potential to improve the tracking accuracy in radiation therapy. In addition, real-time tumor boundary information within the irradiation field will be potentially useful for further applications, such as adaptive beam delivery, dose evaluation.« less
  • The delivery accuracy of radiation therapy for pulmonary and abdominal tumors suffers from tumor motion due to respiration. Respiratory gating should be applied to avoid the use of a large target volume margin that results in a substantial dose to the surrounding normal tissue. Precise respiratory gating requires the exact spatial position of the tumor to be determined in real time during treatment. Usually, fiducial markers are implanted inside or next to the tumor to provide both accurate patient setup and real-time tumor tracking. However, current tumor tracking systems require either substantial x-ray exposure to the patient or large fiducialmore » markers that limit the value of their application for pulmonary tumors. We propose a real-time tumor tracking system using implanted positron emission markers (PeTrack). Each marker will be labeled with low activity positron emitting isotopes, such as {sup 124}I, {sup 74}As, or {sup 84}Rb. These isotopes have half-lives comparable to the duration of radiation therapy (from a few days to a few weeks). The size of the proposed PeTrack marker will be 0.5-0.8 mm, which is approximately one-half the size of markers currently employed in other techniques. By detecting annihilation gammas using position-sensitive detectors, multiple positron emission markers can be tracked in real time. A multimarker localization algorithm was developed using an Expectation-Maximization clustering technique. A Monte Carlo simulation model was developed for the PeTrack system. Patient dose, detector sensitivity, and scatter fraction were evaluated. Depending on the isotope, the lifetime dose from a 3.7 MBq PeTrack marker was determined to be 0.7-5.0 Gy at 10 mm from the marker. At the center of the field of view (FOV), the sensitivity of the PeTrack system was 240-320 counts/s per 1 MBq marker activity within a 30 cm thick patient. The sensitivity was reduced by 45% when the marker was near the edge of the FOV. The scatter fraction ranged from 12% ({sup 124}I,{sup 74}As) to 16% ({sup 84}Rb). In addition, four markers (labeled with {sup 124}I) inside a 30 cm diameter water phantom were simulated to evaluate the feasibility of the multimarker localization algorithm. Localization was considered successful if a marker was localized to within 2 mm from its true location. The success rate of marker localization was found to depend on the number of annihilation events used and the error in the initial estimate of the marker position. By detecting 250 positron annihilation events from 4 markers (average of 62 events per marker), the marker success rates for initial errors of {+-}5, {+-}10, and {+-}15 mm were 99.9%, 99.6%, and 92.4%, respectively. Moreover, the average localization error was 0.55 ({+-}0.27) mm, which was independent of initial error. The computing time for localizing four markers was less than 20 ms (Pentium 4, 2.8 GHz processor, 512 MB memory). In conclusion, preliminary results demonstrate that the PeTrack technique can potentially provide real-time tumor tracking with low doses associated with the marker's activity. Furthermore, the small size of PeTrack markers is expected to facilitate implantation and reduce patient risk.« less
  • Purpose: The new real-time tumor-tracking radiotherapy (RTRT) system was installed in our institution. This system consists of two x-ray tubes and color image intensifiers (I.I.s). The fiducial marker which was implanted near the tumor was tracked using color fluoroscopic images. However, the implantation of the fiducial marker is very invasive. Color fluoroscopic images enable to increase the recognition of the tumor. However, these images were not suitable to track the tumor without fiducial marker. The purpose of this study was to investigate the feasibility of markerless tracking using dual energy colored fluoroscopic images for real-time tumor-tracking radiotherapy system. Methods: Themore » colored fluoroscopic images of static and moving phantom that had the simulated tumor (30 mm diameter sphere) were experimentally acquired using the RTRT system. The programmable respiratory motion phantom was driven using the sinusoidal pattern in cranio-caudal direction (Amplitude: 20 mm, Time: 4 s). The x-ray condition was set to 55 kV, 50 mA and 105 kV, 50 mA for low energy and high energy, respectively. Dual energy images were calculated based on the weighted logarithmic subtraction of high and low energy images of RGB images. The usefulness of dual energy imaging for real-time tracking with an automated template image matching algorithm was investigated. Results: Our proposed dual energy subtraction improve the contrast between tumor and background to suppress the bone structure. For static phantom, our results showed that high tracking accuracy using dual energy subtraction images. For moving phantom, our results showed that good tracking accuracy using dual energy subtraction images. However, tracking accuracy was dependent on tumor position, tumor size and x-ray conditions. Conclusion: We indicated that feasibility of markerless tracking using dual energy fluoroscopic images for real-time tumor-tracking radiotherapy system. Furthermore, it is needed to investigate the tracking accuracy using proposed dual energy subtraction images for clinical cases.« less
  • Precise daily target localization is necessary to achieve highly conformal radiation delivery. In helical tomotherapy, setup verification may be accomplished just prior to delivering each fraction by acquiring a megavoltage CT scan of the patient in the treatment position. This daily image set may be manually or automatically registered to the image set on which the treatment plan was calculated, in order to determine any needed adjustments. The system was tested by acquiring 104 MVCT scans of an anthropomorphic head phantom to which translational displacements had been introduced with respect to the planning image set. Registration results were compared againstmore » an independent, optically guided positioning system. The total experimental uncertainty was within approximately 1 mm. Although the registration of phantom images is not fully analogous to the registration of patient images, this study confirms that the system is capable of phantom localization with sub-voxel accuracy. In seven registration problems considered, expert human observers were able to perform manual registrations with comparable or inferior accuracy to automatic registration by mutual information. The time to compute an automatic registration is considerably shorter than the time required for manual registration. However, human evaluation of automatic results is necessary in order to identify occasional outliers, and to ensure that the registration is clinically acceptable, especially in the case of deformable patient anatomy.« less