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Variability of a peripheral dose among various linac geometries for second cancer risk assessment.
Physics in Medicine and Biology
Second cancer risk assessment for radiotherapy is controversial due to the large uncertainties of the dose-response relationship. This could be improved by a better assessment of the peripheral doses to healthy organs in future epidemiological studies. In this framework, we developed a simple Monte Carlo (MC) model of the Siemens Primus 6 MV linac for both open and wedged fields that we then validated with dose profiles measured in a water tank up to 30 cm from the central axis. The differences between the measured and calculated doses were comparable to other more complex MC models and never exceeded 50%. We then compared our simple MC model with the peripheral dose profiles of five different linacs with different collimation systems. We found that the peripheral dose between two linacs could differ up to a factor of 9 for small fields (5 × 5 cm(2)) and up to a factor of 10 for wedged fields. Considering that an uncertainty of 50% in dose estimation could be acceptable in the context of risk assessment, the MC model can be used as a generic model for large open fields (≥10 × 10 cm(2)) only. The uncertainties in peripheral doses should be considered in future epidemiological studies when designing the width of the dose bins to stratify the risk as a function of the dose.
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