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

Hybrid optimization based on non-coplanar needles for brachytherapy dose planning

Xiaodong Ma
Zhiyong Yang
Shan Jiang
Guobin Zhang
Bin Huo
Shude Chai

J Contemp Brachytherapy 2019; 11, 3: 267–279
Online publish date: 2019/06/23
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An ideal dose distribution in a target is the ultimate goal of preoperative dose planning. Furthermore, avoiding vital organs or tissues such as blood vessels or bones during the puncture procedure is significant in low-dose-rate brachytherapy. The aim of this work is to develop a hybrid inverse optimization method based on non-coplanar needles to assist the physician during conformal dose planning, which cannot be properly achieved with a traditional coplanar template.

Material and methods
The hybrid inverse optimization technique include two novel technologies: an inverse optimization algorithm and a dose volume histogram evaluation method. Brachytherapy treatment planning system was designed as an experimental platform. Left lung adenocarcinoma case was used to test the performance of the method in non-coplanar and coplanar needles, and malignant tumor of spine case was involved to test the practical application of this technique. In addition, the optimization time of every test was also recorded.

The proposed method can achieve an ideal dose distribution, avoiding vital organs (bones). In the first experiment, 13 non-coplanar needles and 24 seeds were used to get an ideal dose distribution to cover the target, whereas 11 coplanar needles and 23 seeds were used to cover the same target. In the second experiment, the new method used 22 non-coplanar needles and 65 seeds to cover the target, while 63 seeds and 22 needles were used in the actual operation. In addition, the computation time of the hybrid inverse optimization method was 20.5 seconds in the tumor of 94.67 cm3 by using 22 needles, which was fast enough for clinical application.

The hybrid inverse optimization method achieved high conformity in the clinical practice. The non-coplanar needle can help to achieve a better dose distribution than the coplanar needle.


brachytherapy, non-coplanar needle, dose volume histogram, inverse optimization

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