Dose distribution at the Bragg peak: Dose measurements using EBT and RTQA gafchromic film set at two positions to the central beam axis
To evaluate the impact of radiochromic film positioning relative to the central beam axis (CAX) in proton beam therapy. Secondarily, to compare the dosimetric measurements obtained by RTQA and EBT film and to compare these to the doses calculated by the treatment planning system (TPS).Methods
The EBT and RTQA dosimetric radiochromic films were immersed in a water phantom and irradiated with a proton beam. The films were placed parallel to the CAX and at a 5° angle on the horizontal plane to assess the effect of film inclination on Bragg peak profiles. Calibration was performed by irradiating small pieces of film at doses ranging from 0.0 Gy to 3.5 Gy in increments of 0.5 Gy. The TPS was used to create treatment plans for two different geometrical targets (cylindrical and cuboidal). After irradiation, all film pieces were scanned on a flatbed scanner and red channel data were extracted from the 48-bit RGB images using ImageJ, Photoshop, Origin8, and Excel software. The dose distributions from the irradiated films were compared to the dose obtained from the TPS. Bragg peak profiles were abstracted from the irradiated films and compared.Results
The dosimetric measurements obtained by both EBT and RTQA positioned at a 5° to the CAX closely matched the dose calculated by the TPS for the cylindrical target. In contrast, dose distributions measured in the cuboidal targets were less precise. Gamma index (GI) values (3%/3 mm acceptance criteria for isodose >90% of dose) were 99.8% and 93% for EBT film placed at a 5° angle versus 47.1% and 80.8% for EBT film parallel to the beam. The dosimetric measurements in RTQA film positioned parallel to the CAX showed GI values with <27% agreement with the TPS-calculated dose.Conclusion
Our finding show that RTQA film can be used to accurately measure doses in the proton beam at the region of Bragg peak; however, to obtain the most accurate readings, the film should be positioned at a small angle to the CAX.