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The treatment of uveal melanoma with proton radiotherapy has provided excellent clinical outcomes. However, contemporary treatment planning systems use simplistic dose algorithms that limit the accuracy of relative dose distributions. Further, absolute predictions of absorbed dose per monitor unit are not yet available in these systems. The purpose of this study was to determine if Monte Carlo methods could predict dose per monitor unit (D/MU) value at the center of a proton spread-out Bragg peak (SOBP) to within 1% on measured values for a variety of treatment fields relevant to ocular proton therapy. The MCNPX Monte Carlo transport code, in combination with realistic models for the ocular beam delivery apparatus and a water phantom, was used to calculate dose distributions and D/MU values, which were verified by the measurements. Measured proton beam data included central-axis depth dose profiles, relative cross-field profiles and absolute D/MU measurements under several combinations of beam penetration ranges and range-modulation widths. The Monte Carlo method predicted D/MU values that agreed with measurement to within 1% and dose profiles that agreed with measurement to within 3% of peak dose or within 0.5 mm distance-to-agreement. Lastly, a demonstration of the clinical utility of this technique included calculations of dose distributions and D/MU values in a realistic model of the human eye. It is possible to predict D/MU values accurately for clinical relevant range-modulated proton beams for ocular therapy using the Monte Carlo method. It is thus feasible to use the Monte Carlo method as a routine absolute dose algorithm for ocular proton therapy. © 2008 Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.

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Physics in Medicine and Biology

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