Conversion of helical tomotherapy plans to step-and-shoot IMRT plans--Pareto front evaluation of plans from a new treatment planning system.
Petersson K., Ceberg C., Engström P., Benedek H., Nilsson P., Knöös T.
PURPOSE: The resulting plans from a new type of treatment planning system called SharePlan have been studied. This software allows for the conversion of treatment plans generated in a TomoTherapy system for helical delivery, into plans deliverable on C-arm linear accelerators (linacs), which is of particular interest for clinics with a single TomoTherapy unit. The purpose of this work was to evaluate and compare the plans generated in the SharePlan system with the original TomoTherapy plans and with plans produced in our clinical treatment planning system for intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) on C-arm linacs. In addition, we have analyzed how the agreement between SharePlan and TomoTherapy plans depends on the number of beams and the total number of segments used in the optimization. METHODS: Optimized plans were generated for three prostate and three head-and-neck (H&N) cases in the TomoTherapy system, and in our clinical treatment planning systems (TPS) used for IMRT planning with step-and-shoot delivery. The TomoTherapy plans were converted into step-and-shoot IMRT plans in SharePlan. For each case, a large number of Pareto optimal plans were created to compare plans generated in SharePlan with plans generated in the Tomotherapy system and in the clinical TPS. In addition, plans were generated in SharePlan for the three head-and-neck cases to evaluate how the plan quality varied with the number of beams used. Plans were also generated with different number of beams and segments for other patient cases. This allowed for an evaluation of how to minimize the number of required segments in the converted IMRT plans without compromising the agreement between them and the original TomoTherapy plans. RESULTS: The plans made in SharePlan were as good as or better than plans from our clinical system, but they were not as good as the original TomoTherapy plans. This was true for both the head-and-neck and the prostate cases, although the differences between the plans for the latter were small. The evaluation of the head-and-neck cases also showed that the plans generated in SharePlan were improved when more beams were used. The SharePlan Pareto front came close to the front for the TomoTherapy system when a sufficient number of beams were added. The results for plans generated with varied number of beams and segments demonstrated that the number of segments could be minimized with maintained agreement between SharePlan and TomoTherapy plans when 10-19 beams were used. CONCLUSIONS: This study showed (using Pareto front evaluation) that the plans generated in Share-Plan are comparable to plans generated in other TPSs. The evaluation also showed that the plans generated in SharePlan could be improved with the use of more beams. To minimize the number of segments needed in a plan with maintained agreement between the converted IMRT plans and the original TomoTherapy plans, 10-19 beams should be used, depending on target complexity. SharePlan has proved to be useful and should thereby be a time-saving complement as a backup system for clinics with a single TomoTherapy system installed alongside conventional C-arm linacs.