Background and purpose: Lung volumes are functionally heterogeneous but typically considered uniformly during radiotherapy planning. The present study aims to predict regional differences in radiation-induced lung damage based on pre-treatment Cr information.
Materials and methods: For 42 lung cancer patients (including 15 from an external validation set), two 200 cc lung subvolumes (low-density (LD) and high-density (HD)) were auto-segmented in the ipsilateral lung of the planning CT. After non-rigid registration of 3 month follow-up CT scans, sigmoidal dose density change (Delta HU = HU3M - HU0) response curves were determined for all subvolumes. Predictive factors for the sigmoidal response parameters D-50 and saturation level Delta HUmax were analyzed.
Results: The baseline density difference between LD (mostly in the upper lobe) and HD (mostly in the lower lobe) was on average 102 HU. The saturation level Delta HUmax,LD was significantly smaller than Delta HUmax,HD (p = 0.03). Expressed as mass density increase relative to the baseline density, saturation levels were 20.7% on average irrespective of baseline density, and they could be predicted in LD and HD subvolumes (AUC = 0.70-0.78). Intra-lung differences in D50 were significantly smaller than inter patient differences.
Conclusions: Limited amount of damage was observed in LD subvolumes, while the relative density increase of all subvolumes was well predictable. This could allow dose redistribution preferentially targeting low-density lung regions. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
- Radiation-induced lung damage
- Density change
- Regional heterogeneity
- Lung cancer
- INTENSITY-MODULATED RADIOTHERAPY
- OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY-DISEASE
- TISSUE DENSITY CHANGES
- CANCER PATIENTS