Treatment planning aspects and Monte Carlo methods in proton therapy

Fix, Michael; Manser, Peter (2015). Treatment planning aspects and Monte Carlo methods in proton therapy. Modern Physics Letters A, 30(17), p. 1540022. World Scientific Publishing 10.1142/S0217732315400222

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Over the last years, the interest in proton radiotherapy is rapidly increasing. Protons provide superior physical properties compared with conventional radiotherapy using photons. These properties result in depth dose curves with a large dose peak at the end of the proton track and the finite proton range allows sparing the distally located healthy tissue. These properties offer an increased flexibility in proton radiotherapy, but also increase the demand in accurate dose estimations. To carry out accurate dose calculations, first an accurate and detailed characterization of the physical proton beam exiting the treatment head is necessary for both currently available delivery techniques: scattered and scanned proton beams. Since Monte Carlo (MC) methods follow the particle track simulating the interactions from first principles, this technique is perfectly suited to accurately model the treatment head. Nevertheless, careful validation of these MC models is necessary. While for the dose estimation pencil beam algorithms provide the advantage of fast computations, they are limited in accuracy. In contrast, MC dose calculation algorithms overcome these limitations and due to recent improvements in efficiency, these algorithms are expected to improve the accuracy of the calculated dose distributions and to be introduced in clinical routine in the near future.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Haematology, Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Laboratory Medicine and Hospital Pharmacy (DOLS) > Clinic of Radiation Oncology > Medical Radiation Physics

UniBE Contributor:

Fix, Michael, Manser, Peter


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




World Scientific Publishing




Beatrice Scheidegger

Date Deposited:

06 Apr 2016 13:45

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:53

Publisher DOI:





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