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Purpose: To determine whether a 3-mm isotropic target margin adequately covers the prostate and seminal vesicles (SVs) during administration of an intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) treatment fraction, assuming that daily image-guided setup is performed just before each fraction. Materials and methods: In-room computed tomographic (CT) scans were acquired immediately before and after a daily treatment fraction in 46 patients with prostate cancer. An eight-field IMRT plan was designed using the pre-fraction CT with a 3-mm margin and subsequently recalculated on the post-fraction CT. For convenience of comparison, dose plans were scaled to full course of treatment (75.6 Gy). Dose coverage was assessed on the post-treatment CT image set. Results: During one treatment fraction (21.4 ± 5.5 min), there were reductions in the volumes of the prostate and SVs receiving the prescribed dose (median reduction 0.1% and 1.0%, respectively, p < 0.001) and in the minimum dose to 0.1 cm3 of their volumes (median reduction 0.5 and 1.5 Gy, p < 0.001). Of the 46 patients, three patients' prostates and eight patients' SVs did not maintain dose coverage above 70 Gy. Rectal filling correlated with decreased percentage-volume of SV receiving 75.6, 70, and 60 Gy (p < 0.02). Conclusions: The 3-mm intrafractional margin was adequate for prostate dose coverage. However, a significant subset of patients lost SV dose coverage. The rectal volume change significantly affected SV dose coverage. For advanced-stage prostate cancers, we recommend to use larger margins or improve organ immobilization (such as with a rectal balloon) to ensure SV coverage. © 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Radiotherapy and Oncology

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