Dosimetric feasibility of moderately hypofractionated/dose escalated radiation therapy for localised prostate cancer with intensity-modulated proton beam therapy using simultaneous integrated boost (SIB-IMPT) and impact of hydrogel prostate-rectum spacer

Purpose: To examine the dosimetric feasibility of hypofractionated/dose escalated radiation therapy in patients with localized prostate carcinoma using simultaneous integrated boost intensity-modulated proton beam therapy (SIB-IMPT) in absence or presence of prostate-rectum spacer.

Methods: IMPT technique was implemented in 23 patients with intermediate- and high-risk prostate cancer treated at West German Proton Therapy Centre from March 2016 till June 2018, using SIB technique prescribing 60 GyRBE and 72 GyRBE in 30 fractions to PTV1 (prostate and seminal vesicle) and PTV2 boost (prostate and proximal seminal vesicle), respectively. In 15 patients, a transperineal injection of hydrogel was applied prior to radiotherapy to increase the distance between prostate and rectum. Planning and all treatments were performed with a 120 ml fluid-filled endorectal balloon customised daily for each patient. For each patient, 2 lateral IMPT beams were implemented taking a field-specific range uncertainty (RU) into account. Dose volume histograms (DVH) were analyzed for PTV2, PTV2 with range uncertainty margin (PTV2RU), rectum, bladder, right/left femoral heads, and penile bulb. For late rectal toxicities, the normal tissue complication probabilities (NTCP) were calculated using different biological models. A DVH- and NTCP-based dosimetric comparison was carried out between non-spacer and spacer groups.

Results: For the 23 patients, high-quality plans could be achieved for target volume and for other organs at risk (OARs). For PTV2, the V107% was 0% and the Dmax did not exceed 106.2% of the prescribed dose. The volume PTV2RU covered by 95% of the dose ranged from 96.16 to 99.95%. The conformality index for PTV2RU was 1.12 ± 0.057 and the homogeneity index (HI) was 1.04 ± 0.014. Rectum Dmax and rectal volume receiving 73–50 Gy could be further reduced for the spacer-group. Significant reductions in mean and median rectal NTCPs (stenosis/necrosis, late rectal bleeding ≥ 2, and late rectal toxicities ≥ 3) were predicted for the spacer group in comparison to the non-spacer group.

Conclusion: Hypofractionated/dose escalated radiotherapy with SIB-IMPT is dosimetrically feasible. Further reduction of the rectal volumes receiving high and medium dose levels (73–50 Gy) and rectal NTCP could be achieved through injection of spacers between rectum and prostate.


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