eISSN: 2081-2841
ISSN: 1689-832X
Journal of Contemporary Brachytherapy
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vol. 11
Original paper

A nomogram to determine required seed air kerma strength in planar Cesium-131 permanent seed implant brachytherapy

Emily Hubley
Michael Trager
Voichita Bar-Ad
Adam Luginbuhl
Laura Doyle

J Contemp Brachytherapy 2019; 11, 1: 91–98
Online publish date: 2019/02/05
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Intraoperatively implanted Cesium-131 (131Cs) permanent seed brachytherapy is used to deliver highly localized re-irradiation in recurrent head and neck cancers. A single planar implant of uniform air kerma strength (AKS) seeds and 10 mm seed-to-seed spacing is used to deliver the prescribed dose to a point 5 mm or 10 mm perpendicular to the center of the implant plane. Nomogram tables to quickly determine the required AKS for rectangular and irregularly shaped implants were created and dosimetrically verified. By eliminating the need for a full treatment planning system plan, nomogram tables allow for fast dose calculation for intraoperative re-planning and for a second check method.

Material and methods
TG-43U1 recommended parameters were used to create a point-source model in MATLAB. The dose delivered to the prescription point from a single 1 U seed at each possible location in the implant plane was calculated. Implant tables were verified using an independent seed model in MIM Symphony LDR™. Implant tables were used to retrospectively determine seed AKS for previous cases: three rectangular and three irregular.

For rectangular implants, the percent difference between required seed AKS calculated using MATLAB and MIM was at most 0.6%. For irregular implants, the percent difference between MATLAB and MIM calculations for individual seed locations was within 1.5% with outliers of less than 3.1% at two distal locations (10.6 cm and 8.8 cm), which have minimal dose contribution to the prescription point. The retrospectively determined AKS for patient implants using nomogram tables agreed with previous calculations within 5% for all six cases.

Nomogram tables were created to determine required AKS per seed for planar uniform AKS 131Cs implants. Comparison with the treatment planning system confirms dosimetric accuracy that is acceptable for use as a second check or for dose calculation in cases of intraoperative re-planning.


brachytherapy, Cesium-131, intraoperative brachytherapy, permanent seed implant, head and neck cancer, nomogram

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