Research Article| Volume 48, ISSUE 1, P37-43, March 2023

Dosimetric benefits of 3D-printed modulated electron bolus following lumpectomy and whole-breast radiotherapy for left breast cancer

Published:November 03, 2022DOI:


      Radiotherapy with electrons is commonly applied to the tumor bed after whole-breast radiotherapy following breast conservation surgery for breast cancer patients. However, the radiation dose to adjacent organs-at-risk (OARs) and conformity of planning target volume (PTV) cannot be optimized. In this study, we examine the feasibility of using modulated electron bolus (MEB) to improve PTV conformity and reduce the dose to these OARs. Twenty-seven patients with left breast cancer were retrospectively selected in this study. For each patient, a tangential photon plan in RayStation treatment planning system with prescription of 26 Gy in 5 fractions was created as base plan. Two electron plans, one without bolus and one with MEB using Adaptiiv software based on the PTV were created. Various dosimetric parameters of OARs including left lung, heart, left anterior descending artery (LAD) and ribs and the conformity indices of PTV of these 2 electron plans together with the base plans were compared. Statistically significant decreases in the dosimetric parameters (V5Gy, V10Gy, V20Gy, and mean dose) of the ipsilateral left lung and the heart were observed with MEB. The median maximum dose to the LAD and the ribs decreased by 6.2% and 4.5% respectively. The median conformity index was improved by 14.3% with median increases of monitor units by 1.7%. Our results show that MEB is feasible resulting in reduction of doses to the predefined OARs and an improved conformity of PTV. By using 3D printing, MEB might be considered as an alternative to conventional electron boost.


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