Introduction: Although tangential radiotherapy is one of the major treatments for breast cancer, little has been done to address the skin toxicity and general dose inhomogeneity experienced in patients with larger breasts that are treated with 6MV photons. From our understanding of radiation in tissue at depth, it is proposed that 10MV photons could have a clear role in such patients through improved dose distribution. However, a greater build up depth with 10MV could mean that this energy is unacceptable.
Aims: To quantify and characterise superficial build up dosimetry in tangential breast irradiation for 6MV and 10MV photons.
Methods: Using Thermoluminescent Dosimeters (TLD’S), a comparative study was carried out investigating dose at a range of superficial depths in a phantom irradiated by tangential fields. Each delivering 2Gy for 6MV and 10MV photons.
Results: There was a 0.10Gy difference in maximum dose over a depth of 10.8 mm between 6MV and 10MV photons, along with an average difference of dose at depth of 0.09Gy.
Conclusion: Evidence has been obtained that eliminates comprise to superficial tissue if 10MV photons are used. Furthermore, reinforcement towards a more homogenous dose distribution with 10MV photons has been established.