Empirical quenching correction in radiochromic silicone-based three-dimensional dosimetry of spot-scanning proton therapy

Lia Valdetaro*, Ellen Marie Høye, Peter Sandegaard Skyt, Jørgen Breede Baltzer Petersen, Peter Balling, Ludvig Muren

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Background and purpose: Three-dimensional dosimetry of proton therapy (PT) with chemical dosimeters is challenged by signal quenching, which is a lower dose-response in regions with high ionization density due to high linear-energy-transfer (LET) and dose-rate. This study aimed to assess the viability of an empirical correction model for 3D radiochromic silicone-based dosimeters irradiated with spot-scanning PT, by parametrizing its LET and dose-rate dependency. Materials and methods: Ten cylindrical radiochromic dosimeters (Ø50 and Ø75 mm) were produced in-house, and irradiated with different spot-scanning proton beam configurations and machine-set dose rates ranging from 56 to 145 Gy/min. Beams with incident energies of 75, 95 and 120 MeV, a spread-out Bragg peak and a plan optimized to an irregular target volume were included. Five of the dosimeters, irradiated with 120 MeV beams, were used to estimate the quenching correction factors. Monte Carlo simulations were used to obtain dose and dose-averaged-LET (LET d) maps. Additionally, a local dose-rate map was estimated, using the simulated dose maps and the machine-set dose-rate information retrieved from the irradiation log-files. Finally, the correction factor was estimated as a function of LET d and local dose-rate and tested on the different fields. Results: Gamma-pass-rates of the corrected measurements were >94% using a 3%-3 mm gamma analysis and >88% using 2%-2 mm, with a dose deviation of <5.6 ± 1.8%. Larger dosimeters showed a 20% systematic increase in dose-response, but the same quenching in signal when compared to the smaller dosimeters. Conclusion: The quenching correction model was valid for different dosimeter sizes to obtain relative dosimetric maps of complex dose distributions in PT.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysics and Imaging in Radiation Oncology
Pages (from-to)11-18
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021


  • 3D dosimetry
  • Dosimeter calibration
  • Proton therapy
  • Quenching


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