Contour scanning for penumbra improvement in pencil beam scanned proton therapy.

Meier, Gabriel; Leiser, Dominic; Besson, Rico; Mayor, Alexandre; Safai, Sairos; Weber, Damien Charles; Lomax, Antony (2017). Contour scanning for penumbra improvement in pencil beam scanned proton therapy. Physics in medicine and biology, 62(6), pp. 2398-2416. Institute of Physics Publishing IOP 10.1088/1361-6560/aa5dde

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Proton therapy, especially in the form of pencil beam scanning (PBS), allows for the delivery of highly conformal dose distributions for complex tumor geometries. However, due to scattering of protons inside the patient, lateral dose gradients cannot be arbitrarily steep, which is of importance in cases with organs at risk (OARs) in close proximity to or overlapping planning target volumes (PTVs). In the PBS approach, physical pencil beams are planned using a regular grid orthogonal to the beam direction. In this work, we propose an alternative to this commonly used approach, by defining pencil beams on an irregular grid which is concentric to the target contour. Contour driven pencil beam placement is expected to improve dose confirmation by allowing the optimizer to best enhance the penumbra of irregularly shaped targets using edge enhancement. Its effectiveness has been shown to improve dose confirmation to the target volume and reduce doses to OARs in head-and-neck planning studies. Furthermore, the deliverability of such plans, as well as the dosimetric improvements over conventional grid-based plans, have been confirmed in first phantom based verifications at our institute.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


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

UniBE Contributor:

Leiser, Dominic, Weber, Damien Charles


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Institute of Physics Publishing IOP




Beatrice Scheidegger

Date Deposited:

27 Feb 2018 15:27

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:03

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

pencil beam scanning proton therapy scanning patterns




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