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Characterization of combined intracavitary/interstitial brachytherapy including oblique needles in locally advanced cervix cancer

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PURPOSE: To characterize and report on dosimetric outcomes of image guided adaptive brachytherapy (IGABT) using intracavitary and interstitial (IC/IS) applicators including oblique needles (O-needles) in locally advanced cervical cancer (LACC). METHODS AND MATERIALS: Twenty LACC patients treated with radio-chemotherapy and offered IC/IS-IGABT including O-needles were analyzed. An in-house 3D-printed vaginal template was used to steer the needles parallel and obliquely in relation to the tandem, supplemented with free-hand needles if needed. Implant characteristics and loading patterns were analyzed. Using the equivalent dose in 2Gy-fractions (EQD2) concept, cumulative (EBRT+BT) V85, V75, V60Gy, targets/OARs doses and high dose volumes (150%, 200% and 300% (100% = 85 Gy EQD210)) were evaluated. RESULTS: Median(range) tumor width at diagnosis was 5.5(3.6; 7.5)cm; CTVHR volume was 45(23; 136)cm3 with maximum distance from tandem to CTVHR border of 3.4(2.5; 4.8)cm. T-stage distribution was IIB/III/IVA in 6(30%)/9(45%)/5(25%) of patients. At BT, 13(65%) patients had distal parametrial/pelvic wall infiltration. Median(range) number of needles per patient was 11(8–18). Average distribution of intrauterine, vaginal and interstitial dwell times were 31%, 25% and 44%, respectively. Median(range) dwell-time per dwell position was 11(2–127)% of average point-A based standard loading. Median V85Gy/V150%/V200%/V300% were 85(38; 171)/41(21; 93)/22(12; 41)/7(4; 19) cm3; CTVHR D90% was 93(83; 97)Gy EQD210; bladder/rectum/sigmoid/bowel D2cm3 were 78(64; 104)/65(52; 76)/59(53; 69)/61(47; 76)Gy EQD23. CONCLUSIONS: The use of O-needles in patients with large and/or unfavorable tumors resulted in excellent target coverage and OARs sparing. Intrauterine and vaginal loadings were reduced compared to standard loading and almost half of the loading was shifted into IS needles. This was achieved with gentle loading in the majority of dwell positions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)796-806
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 American Brachytherapy Society

    Research areas

  • Cervix cancer, Intracavitary and interstitial brachytherapy, MR-guided adaptive brachytherapy, Parallel and oblique needles

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