Dosimetric Investigation of Electron Arc Therapy Delivered Using Siemens Electron Arc Applicator with a Trapezoidal Aperture
Thesis DisciplineMedical Physics
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
This study investigated the delivery of electron arc treatment with a trapezoidal aperture. The aim of the investigation is to reduce the nonuniformity of the dose distribution, which is caused by the variation of the patient contour from superior to inferior. The characteristics of static electron beam were first investigated. Then a measurement-based algorithm was developed and implemented as a computer program called EarcMU to calculate the monitor units required for delivering the prescribed dose with a trapezoidal aperture. The central axis percentage depth dose was found to be independent of source-to-surface distance (SSD) and the width of the aperture. The inplane profiles of a trapezoidal aperture show that the dose decreases longitudinally from the wide to the narrow end of the trapezoidal aperture. The EarcMU program was verified using two cylindrical water phantoms. The measured dose and the dose calculated by the program agreed within 2.1% in the typical clinical conditions. A simple method was also proposed for determining the trapezoidal aperture for an individual patient. Under the same conditions, the trapezoidal apertures calculated by this method along with the open aperture were used to deliver treatments to several conical phantoms. Significant improvement in the uniformity of dose distribution was observed. On average, the flatness index of the longitudinal dose distribution from superior to inferior decreases dramatically from 8% for open aperture down to 0.58% for trapezoidal aperture. The results are clinically significant, indicating that delivering the electron arc treatment using a trapezoidal aperture can bring more uniform dose to the patient regardless of the change of patient contour from superior to inferior.