Synchrotron radiation external beam rotational radiotherapy of breast cancer: proof of principle
The principle of rotational summation of the absorbed dose for breast cancer treatment with orthovoltage X‐ray beams was proposed by J. Boone in 2012. Here, use of X‐ray synchrotron radiation for image guided external beam rotational radiotherapy treatment of breast cancer is proposed. Tumor irradiation occurs with the patient in the prone position hosted on a rotating bed, with her breast hanging from a hole in the bed, which rotates around a vertical axis passing through the tumor site. Horizontal collimation of the X‐ray beam provides for whole breast or partial breast irradiation, while vertical translation of the bed and successive rotations allow for irradiation of the full tumor volume, with dose rates which permit also hypofractionated treatments. In this work, which follows a previous preliminary report, results are shown of a full series of measurements on polyethylene and acrylic cylindrical phantoms carried out at the Australian Synchrotron, confirmed by Geant4 Monte Carlo simulations, intended to demonstrate the proof of principle of the technique. Dose measurements were carried out with calibrated ion chambers, radiochromic films and thermoluminescence dosimeters. The photon energy investigated was 60 keV. Image guidance may occur with the transmitted beam for contrast‐enhanced breast computed tomography. For a horizontal beam collimation of 1.5 cm and rotation around the central axis of a 14 cm‐diameter polyethylene phantom, a periphery‐to‐center dose ratio of 14% was measured. The simulations showed that under the same conditions the dose ratio decreases with increasing photon energy down to 10% at 175 keV. These values are comparable with those achievable with conventional megavoltage radiotherapy of breast cancer with a medical linear accelerator. Dose painting was demonstrated with two off‐center `cancer foci' with 1.3 Gy and 0.6 Gy target doses. The use of a radiosensitizing agent for dose enhancement is foreseen.
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