Purpose: This study recruited 2 centers with expertise in treating pediatric brain tumors with robotic radiation delivery system photon therapy and proton therapy, respectively, to study the plan quality and dose deposition characteristics of robotic radiation delivery system photon therapy and intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) plans. Methods and Materials: A total of 18 patients clinically treated with the robotic radiation delivery system were planned with IMPT. Cases were planned per the standard of care of each institution but respected the same planning objectives. The comparison included 3 aspects: plan quality, dose fall-off characteristics around the target volume, and the volume of the high-, intermediate-, and low-dose baths. Results: All robotic radiation delivery system and IMPT plans met the planning objectives. However, IMPT significantly reduced the maximum dose to organs at risk away from the planning target volume (PTV), such as the cochlea and eye (P < .05), and the mean dose to the normal brain (P < .05). No statistically significant difference was observed in the maximum dose to the optical pathway and brain stem. Robotic radiation delivery system plans demonstrated a sharper dose fall-off within 5 mm around the PTV (P < .05), whereas IMPT significantly lowered the dose to the normal tissue beyond 10 mm from the PTV (P < .05). The robotic radiation delivery system offers a smaller high-dose bath whereas IMPT offers a smaller low-dose bath (P < .05). However, the difference in intermediate dose is not statistically significant. Conclusions: In general, robotic radiation delivery system plans exhibit reduced high-dose exposure to normal tissue, and IMPT plans have considerably smaller volumes of low-dose exposure with differences in medium-range dose baths increasingly favoring protons as tumor size increases.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging