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Volumetric-modulated arc therapy (VMAT) is an advanced form of intensity-modulated radiation therapy that reduces treatment time without compromising plan quality. This study assessed acute toxicities in patients having carcinomas of oropharynx, larynx and hypopharynx treated with concomitant boost radiation therapy by VMAT.
Materials and methods
In this study, 30 patients of stages II–IVA disease were treated with concomitant boost radiation therapy using VMAT and those with stages III and IV also received concurrent chemotherapy with cisplatin 100 mg/m2 weekly thrice for two cycles. The total dose was 68·4 Gy/40 fractions/5.5 weeks (1·8 Gy/fraction/day to the large field for 28 fractions +1·5 Gy/fraction/day to boost field for the last 12 days of treatment). Radiation Therapy Oncology Group acute radiation morbidity scoring criteria was used to grade acute effects.
All patients completed scheduled treatment with median duration of 44 days. No grade 4 skin and mucosal toxicities were observed; grade 3 skin and mucosal toxicities seen in six (20%) and eight (26·67%) patients, respectively; grade 3 dysphagia and laryngeal toxicity in eight (26·67%) and three (10%) patients, respectively; two patients had grade 4 laryngeal toxicity. No grade 3 or grade 4 haematological toxicities were seen.
VMAT-based concomitant boost radiation therapy allows for dose escalation with good patient tolerance by limiting acute toxicities.
To evaluate the inter-fraction variation in interstitial high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy. To assess the positional displacement of catheters during the fractions and the resultant impact on dosimetry.
Although brachytherapy continues to be a key cornerstone of cancer care, it is clear that treatment innovations are needed to build on this success and ensure that brachytherapy continues to provide quality care for patients. The dosimetric advantages offered by HDR brachytherapy to the tumour volume rely on catheter positions being accurately reproduced for all fractions of treatment.
Materials and methods
A total of 66 patients treated over a period of 22 months were considered for this study. All the patients underwent computer tomography (CT) scan and three-dimensional treatment planning was carried out. Brachytherapy treatment was delivered by the HDR afterloading system. On completing the last fraction, CT scan was repeated and treatment re-planning was done. The variation in position of the implanted applicators and their impact on dosimetric parameters were analysed using both the plans.
For all breast-implant patients, the catheter displacement and D90 dose to clinical target volume were <3 mm and 3%, respectively. The displacement for carcinoma of the tongue, carcinoma of the buccal mucosa, carcinoma of the floor of mouth, carcinoma of the cervix, soft-tissue sarcoma and carcinoma of the lip were comparatively high.
Inter-fraction errors occur frequently in interstitial HDR brachytherapy. If no action is taken, it will result in a significant risk of geometrical miss and overdose to the organs at risk. It is not recommended to use a single plan to deliver all the fractions. Imaging is recommended before each fraction and decision on re-planning must be taken.
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