Journal of Medical Physics
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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 37  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 138-144

Discrepancies in determining electron energy for lumpectomy boost treatment

1 St Vincent Hospital Green Bay WI, USA
2 Department of Radiation Oncology, DABR Southeast Alabama Medical Center, USA

Correspondence Address:
Aime M Gloi
ST Vincent Hospital 830 South Van Buren Street Green Bay, WI 54307
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-6203.99234

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The aim of this study was to compare lumpectomy cavity depth measurements obtained through ultrasound (U/S) and retrospective computed tomography (CT). Twenty-five patients with stage T1-2 invasive breast cancer formed the cohort of this study. Their U/S and CT measurements were converted into electron energy and compared. The mean U/S depth was 3.6 ± 1.3 cm, while the mean CT depth was 4.9 ± 1.9 cm; the listed error ranges are one standard deviation. Electron energies for treatment ranged from 6 MeV to 12 MeV based on the U/S determination. There was no significant correlation between cavity depths measured by U/S and CT (R 2 = 0.459, P < 0.002). Furthermore, only 20% of CT-based electron energy determinations matched the corresponding U/S determinations. This ratio increased to 40% when taking into account an upper limit based on the depth of organs at risk below the cavity. The study shows that there is a significant discrepancy between cavity depths determined by U/S and CT. It also supports the concept that post-lumpectomy radiotherapy boosts should be tailored according to the needs and comfort of individual practices and institutions.

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