This study aims to employ 4-dimensional computed tomography to quantify intrafractional tumor motion for patients with lung cancer to improve target localization in radiation therapy. A multistage regional deformable registration was implemented to calculate the excursion of gross tumor volume (GTV) during a breathing cycle. GTV was initially delineated on 0% phase of 4-dimensional computed tomography manually, and a subregion with 20 mm margin supplemented to GTV was generated with Eclipse treatment planning system (Varian Medical Systems, Palo Alto, California). The structures, together with the 4-dimensional computed tomography set, were exported into an in-house software, with which a 3-stage B-spline deformable registration was carried out to map the subregion and warp GTV contour to other breathing phases. The center of mass of the GTV was computed using the contours, and the tumor motion was appraised as the excursion of the center of mass between 0% phase and other phases. Application of the algorithm to the 10 patients showed that clinically satisfactory outcomes were achievable with a spatial accuracy around 2 mm for GTV contour propagation between adjacent phases and 3 mm between opposite phases. The tumor excursion was determined in the vast range of 1 mm through 1.6 cm, depending on the tumor location and tumor size. Compared to the traditional whole image-based registration, the regional method was found computationally a factor of 5 more efficient. The proposed technique has demonstrated its capability in extracting thoracic tumor motion and should find its application in 4-dimensional radiation therapy in the future to maximally utilize the available spatial–temporal information.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cancer Research