Online Adaptive MRI-Guided Radiotherapy for Primary Tumor and Lymph Node Boosting in Rectal Cancer.


The purpose of this study was to characterize the motion and define the required treatment margins of the pathological mesorectal lymph nodes (GTVln) for two online adaptive MRI-guided strategies for sequential boosting. Secondly, we determine the margins required for the primary gross tumor volume (GTVprim). Twenty-eight patients treated on a 1.5T MR-Linac were included in the study. On T2-weighted images for adaptation (MRIadapt) before and verification after irradiation (MRIpost) of five treatment fractions per patient, the GTVln and GTVprim were delineated. With online adaptive MRI-guided radiotherapy, daily plan adaptation can be performed through the use of two different strategies. In an adapt-to-shape (ATS) workflow the interfraction motion is effectively corrected by redelineation and the only relevant motion is intrafraction motion, while in an adapt-to-position (ATP) workflow the margin (for GTVln) is dominated by interfraction motion. The margin required for GTVprim will be identical to the ATS workflow, assuming each fraction would be perfectly matched on GTVprim. The intrafraction motion was calculated between MRIadapt and MRIpost for the GTVln and GTVprim separately. The interfraction motion of the GTVln was calculated with respect to the position of GTVprim, assuming each fraction would be perfectly matched on GTVprim. PTV margins were calculated for each strategy using the Van Herk recipe. For GTVln we randomly sampled the original dataset 20 times, with each subset containing a single randomly selected lymph node for each patient. The resulting margins for ATS ranged between 3 and 4 mm (LR), 3 and 5 mm (CC) and 5 and 6 mm (AP) based on the 20 randomly sampled datasets for GTVln. For ATP, the margins for GTVln were 10-12 mm in LR and AP and 16-19 mm in CC. The margins for ATS for GTVprim were 1.7 mm (LR), 4.7 mm (CC) and 3.2 mm anterior and 5.6 mm posterior. Daily delineation using ATS of both target volumes results in the smallest margins and is therefore recommended for safe dose escalation to the primary tumor and lymph nodes.

More about this publication

  • Volume 15
  • Issue nr. 4
  • Publication date 05-02-2023

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