skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: SU-F-J-71: Improving CT Quality for Radiation Therapy Planning and Delivery Guidance Using a Non-Linear Contrast Enhancement Technique

Abstract

Purpose: Advanced image post-processing techniques which enhance soft-tissue contrast in CT have not been widely employed for RT planning or delivery guidance. The purpose of this work is to assess the soft-tissue contrast enhancement from non-linear contrast enhancing filters and its impact in RT. The contrast enhancement reduces patient alignment uncertainties. Methods: Non-linear contrast enhancing methods, such as Best Contrast (Siemens), amplify small differences in X-ray attenuation between two adjacent structure without significantly increasing noise. Best Contrast (BC) separates a CT into two frequency bands. The low frequency band is modified by a non-linear scaling function before recombination with the high frequency band. CT data collected using a CT-on-rails (Definition AS Open, Siemens) during daily CT-guided RT for 6 prostate cancer patients and an image quality phantom (The Phantom Laboratory) were analyzed. Images acquired with a standard protocol (120 kVp, 0.6 pitch, 18 mGy CTDIvol) were processed before comparison to the unaltered images. Contrast and noise were measured in the the phantom. Inter-observer variation was assessed by placing prostate contours on the 12 CT study sets, 6 enhanced and 6 unaltered, in a blinded study involving 8 observers. Results: The phantom data demonstrate that BC increased the contrast between themore » 1.0% supra-slice element and the background substrate by 46.5 HU while noise increased by only 2.3 HU. Thus the contrast to noise ratio increased from 1.28 to 6.71. Furthermore, the variation in centroid position of the prostate contours was decreased from 1.3±0.4 mm to 0.8±0.3 mm. Thus the CTV-to-PTV margin was reduced by 1.1 mm. The uncertainty in delineation of the prostate/rectum edge decreased by 0.5 mm. Conclusion: As demonstrated in phantom and patient scans the BC filter accentuates soft-tissue contrast. This enhancement leads to reduced inter-observer variation, which should improve RT planning and delivery. Supported by Siemens.« less

Authors:
; ;  [1]
  1. Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22632200
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Medical Physics; Journal Volume: 43; Journal Issue: 6; Other Information: (c) 2016 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; 61 RADIATION PROTECTION AND DOSIMETRY; ANIMAL TISSUES; ATTENUATION; COMPUTERIZED TOMOGRAPHY; IMAGES; NEOPLASMS; NOISE; PHANTOMS; PROSTATE; RADIOTHERAPY; RECTUM

Citation Formats

Noid, G, Tai, A, and Li, X. SU-F-J-71: Improving CT Quality for Radiation Therapy Planning and Delivery Guidance Using a Non-Linear Contrast Enhancement Technique. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1118/1.4955979.
Noid, G, Tai, A, & Li, X. SU-F-J-71: Improving CT Quality for Radiation Therapy Planning and Delivery Guidance Using a Non-Linear Contrast Enhancement Technique. United States. doi:10.1118/1.4955979.
Noid, G, Tai, A, and Li, X. 2016. "SU-F-J-71: Improving CT Quality for Radiation Therapy Planning and Delivery Guidance Using a Non-Linear Contrast Enhancement Technique". United States. doi:10.1118/1.4955979.
@article{osti_22632200,
title = {SU-F-J-71: Improving CT Quality for Radiation Therapy Planning and Delivery Guidance Using a Non-Linear Contrast Enhancement Technique},
author = {Noid, G and Tai, A and Li, X},
abstractNote = {Purpose: Advanced image post-processing techniques which enhance soft-tissue contrast in CT have not been widely employed for RT planning or delivery guidance. The purpose of this work is to assess the soft-tissue contrast enhancement from non-linear contrast enhancing filters and its impact in RT. The contrast enhancement reduces patient alignment uncertainties. Methods: Non-linear contrast enhancing methods, such as Best Contrast (Siemens), amplify small differences in X-ray attenuation between two adjacent structure without significantly increasing noise. Best Contrast (BC) separates a CT into two frequency bands. The low frequency band is modified by a non-linear scaling function before recombination with the high frequency band. CT data collected using a CT-on-rails (Definition AS Open, Siemens) during daily CT-guided RT for 6 prostate cancer patients and an image quality phantom (The Phantom Laboratory) were analyzed. Images acquired with a standard protocol (120 kVp, 0.6 pitch, 18 mGy CTDIvol) were processed before comparison to the unaltered images. Contrast and noise were measured in the the phantom. Inter-observer variation was assessed by placing prostate contours on the 12 CT study sets, 6 enhanced and 6 unaltered, in a blinded study involving 8 observers. Results: The phantom data demonstrate that BC increased the contrast between the 1.0% supra-slice element and the background substrate by 46.5 HU while noise increased by only 2.3 HU. Thus the contrast to noise ratio increased from 1.28 to 6.71. Furthermore, the variation in centroid position of the prostate contours was decreased from 1.3±0.4 mm to 0.8±0.3 mm. Thus the CTV-to-PTV margin was reduced by 1.1 mm. The uncertainty in delineation of the prostate/rectum edge decreased by 0.5 mm. Conclusion: As demonstrated in phantom and patient scans the BC filter accentuates soft-tissue contrast. This enhancement leads to reduced inter-observer variation, which should improve RT planning and delivery. Supported by Siemens.},
doi = {10.1118/1.4955979},
journal = {Medical Physics},
number = 6,
volume = 43,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 6
}
  • Purpose: A novel optimization technique was developed for field-in-field (FIF) chestwall radiotherapy using bolus every other day. The dosimetry was compared to currently used optimization. Methods: The prior five patients treated at our clinic to the chestwall and supraclavicular nodes with a mono-isocentric four-field arrangement were selected for this study. The prescription was 5040 cGy in 28 fractions, 5 mm bolus every other day on the tangent fields, 6 and/or 10 MV x-rays, and multileaf collimation.Novelly, tangents FIF segments were forward planned optimized based on the composite bolus and non-bolus dose distribution simultaneously. The prescription was spilt into 14 fractionsmore » for both bolus and non-bolus tangents. The same segments and monitor units were used for the bolus and non-bolus treatment. The plan was optimized until the desired coverage was achieved, minimized 105% hotspots, and a maximum dose of less than 108%. Each tangential field had less than 5 segments.Comparison plans were generated using FIF optimization with the same dosimetric goals, but using only the non-bolus calculation for FIF optimization. The non-bolus fields were then copied and bolus was applied. The same segments and monitor units were used for the bolus and non-bolus segments. Results: The prescription coverage of the chestwall, as defined by RTOG guidelines, was on average 51.8% for the plans that optimized bolus and non-bolus treatments simultaneous (SB) and 43.8% for the plans optimized to the non-bolus treatments (NB). Chestwall coverage of 90% prescription averaged to 80.4% for SB and 79.6% for NB plans. The volume receiving 105% of the prescription was 1.9% for SB and 0.8% for NB plans on average. Conclusion: Simultaneously optimizing for bolus and non-bolus treatments noticeably improves prescription coverage of the chestwall while maintaining similar hotspots and 90% prescription coverage in comparison to optimizing only to non-bolus treatments.« less
  • Modulated electron radiation therapy (MERT) offers the potential to improve healthy tissue sparing through increased dose conformity. Challenges remain, however, in accurate beamlet dose calculation, plan optimization, collimation method and delivery accuracy. In this work, we investigate the accuracy and efficiency of an end-to-end MERT plan and automated-delivery workflow for the electron boost portion of a previously treated whole breast irradiation case. Dose calculations were performed using Monte Carlo methods and beam weights were determined using a research-based treatment planning system capable of inverse optimization. The plan was delivered to radiochromic film placed in a water equivalent phantom for verification,more » using an automated motorized tertiary collimator. The automated delivery, which covered 4 electron energies, 196 subfields and 6183 total MU was completed in 25.8 minutes, including 6.2 minutes of beam-on time with the remainder of the delivery time spent on collimator leaf motion and the automated interfacing with the accelerator in service mode. The delivery time could be reduced by 5.3 minutes with minor electron collimator modifications and the beam-on time could be reduced by and estimated factor of 2–3 through redesign of the scattering foils. Comparison of the planned and delivered film dose gave 3%/3 mm gamma pass rates of 62.1, 99.8, 97.8, 98.3, and 98.7 percent for the 9, 12, 16, 20 MeV, and combined energy deliveries respectively. Good results were also seen in the delivery verification performed with a MapCHECK 2 device. The results showed that accurate and efficient MERT delivery is possible with current technologies.« less
  • Purpose: Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) treatment planning can have wide variation among different treatment centers. We propose a system to leverage the IMRT planning experience of larger institutions to automatically create high-quality plans for outside clinics. We explore feasibility by generating plans for patient datasets from an outside institution by adapting plans from our institution. Methods and Materials: A knowledge database was created from 132 IMRT treatment plans for prostate cancer at our institution. The outside institution, a community hospital, provided the datasets for 55 prostate cancer cases, including their original treatment plans. For each “query” case from themore » outside institution, a similar “match” case was identified in the knowledge database, and the match case’s plan parameters were then adapted and optimized to the query case by use of a semiautomated approach that required no expert planning knowledge. The plans generated with this knowledge-based approach were compared with the original treatment plans at several dose cutpoints. Results: Compared with the original plan, the knowledge-based plan had a significantly more homogeneous dose to the planning target volume and a significantly lower maximum dose. The volumes of the rectum, bladder, and femoral heads above all cutpoints were nominally lower for the knowledge-based plan; the reductions were significantly lower for the rectum. In 40% of cases, the knowledge-based plan had overall superior (lower) dose–volume histograms for rectum and bladder; in 54% of cases, the comparison was equivocal; in 6% of cases, the knowledge-based plan was inferior for both bladder and rectum. Conclusions: Knowledge-based planning was superior or equivalent to the original plan in 95% of cases. The knowledge-based approach shows promise for homogenizing plan quality by transferring planning expertise from more experienced to less experienced institutions.« less
  • Purpose: This work describes a commercial treatment planning system, its technical features, and its capabilities for creating {sup 60}Co intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) treatment plans for a magnetic resonance image guidance radiation therapy (MR-IGRT) system. Methods and Materials: The ViewRay treatment planning system (Oakwood Village, OH) was used to create {sup 60}Co IMRT treatment plans for 33 cancer patients with disease in the abdominal, pelvic, thorax, and head and neck regions using physician-specified patient-specific target coverage and organ at risk (OAR) objectives. Backup plans using a third-party linear accelerator (linac)-based planning system were also created. Plans were evaluated bymore » attending physicians and approved for treatment. The {sup 60}Co and linac plans were compared by evaluating conformity numbers (CN) with 100% and 95% of prescription reference doses and heterogeneity indices (HI) for planning target volumes (PTVs) and maximum, mean, and dose-volume histogram (DVH) values for OARs. Results: All {sup 60}Co IMRT plans achieved PTV coverage and OAR sparing that were similar to linac plans. PTV conformity for {sup 60}Co was within <1% and 3% of linac plans for 100% and 95% prescription reference isodoses, respectively, and heterogeneity was on average 4% greater. Comparisons of OAR mean dose showed generally better sparing with linac plans in the low-dose range <20 Gy, but comparable sparing for organs with mean doses >20 Gy. The mean doses for all {sup 60}Co plan OARs were within clinical tolerances. Conclusions: A commercial {sup 60}Co MR-IGRT device can produce highly conformal IMRT treatment plans similar in quality to linac IMRT for a variety of disease sites. Additional work is in progress to evaluate the clinical benefit of other novel features of this MR-IGRT system.« less
  • Purpose: To clinically evaluate the differences in volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) treatment plan and delivery between two commercial treatment planning systems. Methods: Two commercial VMAT treatment planning systems with different VMAT optimization algorithms and delivery approaches were evaluated. This study included 16 clinical VMAT plans performed with the first system: 2 spine, 4 head and neck (HN), 2 brain, 4 pancreas, and 4 pelvis plans. These 16 plans were then re-optimized with the same number of arcs using the second treatment planning system. Planning goals were invariant between the two systems. Gantry speed, dose rate modulation, MLC modulation, planmore » quality, number of monitor units (MUs), VMAT quality assurance (QA) results, and treatment delivery time were compared between the 2 systems. VMAT QA results were performed using Mapcheck2 and analyzed with gamma analysis (3mm/3% and 2mm/2%). Results: Similar plan quality was achieved with each VMAT optimization algorithm, and the difference in delivery time was minimal. Algorithm 1 achieved planning goals by highly modulating the MLC (total distance traveled by leaves (TL) = 193 cm average over control points per plan), while maintaining a relatively constant dose rate (dose-rate change <100 MU/min). Algorithm 2 involved less MLC modulation (TL = 143 cm per plan), but greater dose-rate modulation (range = 0-600 MU/min). The average number of MUs was 20% less for algorithm 2 (ratio of MUs for algorithms 2 and 1 ranged from 0.5-1). VMAT QA results were similar for all disease sites except HN plans. For HN plans, the average gamma passing rates were 88.5% (2mm/2%) and 96.9% (3mm/3%) for algorithm 1 and 97.9% (2mm/2%) and 99.6% (3mm/3%) for algorithm 2. Conclusion: Both VMAT optimization algorithms achieved comparable plan quality; however, fewer MUs were needed and QA results were more robust for Algorithm 2, which more highly modulated dose rate.« less