An autopilot scheme of volumetric-modulated arc therapy (VMAT)/intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) planning with the guidance of prior knowledge is established with recorded interactions between a planner and a commercial treatment planning system (TPS). Microsoft (MS) Visual Studio Coded UI is applied to record some common planner-TPS interactions as subroutines. The TPS used in this study is a Windows-based Eclipse system. The interactions of our application program with Eclipse TPS are realized through a series of subroutines obtained by prerecording the mouse clicks or keyboard strokes of a planner in operating the TPS. A strategy to autopilot Eclipse VMAT/IMRT plan selection process is developed as a specific example of the proposed “scripting” method. The autopiloted planning is navigated by a decision function constructed with a reference plan that has the same prescription and similar anatomy with the case at hand. The calculation proceeds by alternating between the Eclipse optimization and the outer-loop optimization independent of the Eclipse. In the C# program, the dosimetric characteristics of a reference treatment plan are used to assess and modify the Eclipse planning parameters and to guide the search for a clinically sensible treatment plan. The approach is applied to plan a head and neck (HN) VMAT case and a prostate IMRT case. Our study demonstrated the feasibility of application programming method in C# environment with recorded interactions of planner-TPS. The process mimics a planner's planning process and automatically provides clinically sensible treatment plans that would otherwise require a large amount of manual trial and error of a planner. The proposed technique enables us to harness a commercial TPS by application programming via the use of recorded human computer interactions and provides an effective tool to greatly facilitate the treatment planning process.
PACS number(s): 87.55.D-, 87.55.kd, 87.55.de