The importance of mesorectum motion in determining PTV margins in rectal cancer patients treated with neoadjuvant radiotherapy

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Alickikus Z. A., Kuru A., AYDIN B., AKÇAY D., GÖRKEN İ.

JOURNAL OF RADIATION RESEARCH, vol.61, no.2, pp.335-342, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 61 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1093/jrr/rrz092
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Aerospace Database, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, INSPEC, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.335-342
  • Keywords: Rectal cancer, radiotherapy, mesorectum, dosimetric changes, PREOPERATIVE RADIOTHERAPY, RADIATION-THERAPY, CHEMORADIOTHERAPY, RECURRENCE, EXCISION, OUTCOMES
  • Dokuz Eylül University Affiliated: Yes


New precision radiotherapy (RT) techniques reduce the uncertainties in localizing soft and moving tumors. However, there are still many uncontrollable internal organ movements. In our study, patients who underwent neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy (NA-CRT) for rectal cancer were evaluated to determine inter-fraction mesorectum motion and dosimetric changes. Fourteen patients treated with NA-CRT for rectal cancer between 2014 and 2016 were included in the analysis. The mesorectum and clinical target volume (CTV) were delineated on planning computed tomography (CT) and cone-beam CT (CB-CT) scans. After planning with a volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) plan, re-planning was performed on all CB-CTs. Finally, the volumetric and dosimetric changes of PTV and mesorectum were evaluated in all CB-CTs compared with the initial CT and VMAT plans. The geometrical center of mesorectum volume in CB-CTs had moved 1 (0.2-6.6), 1.6 (0.2-3.8) and 1.6 (0-4.9) mm in the x, y and z-axis respectively compared with the initial CT. The dosimetric parameters of PTV including D2, D95 and D98 on CB-CT showed a median 47.19 (46.70-47.80), 45.05 (44.18-45.68) and 44.69 (43.83-45.48) Gy and median 1% (1-2), 0% (0-2) and 1% (0-2) dosimetric change compared with the initial VMAT plan. In our study, we have shown that the mesorectum has moved up to 20 mm in the lateral and anterior-posterior direction and almost 10 mm in the superior/inferior direction during RT, causing a median of similar to 2% change in dosimetric parameters. Therefore, these movements must be considered in determining PTV margins to avoid dosimetric changes.