24 March 2011 DICOM-based computer-aided evaluation of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) treatment plans
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Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) has gained popularity in the treatment of cancers because of its excellent local control with decreased normal tissue complications. Yet, computer planning for the treatment relies heavily on human inspection of resultant radiation dose distribution within the irradiated region of the body. Even for experienced planners, comparison of IMRT plans is definitely cumbersome and not error-free. To solve this problem, a computer-aided decision-support system was built for automatic evaluation of IMRT plans based on the DICOM standard. A DICOM based IMRT plan with DICOM and DICOM-RT objects including CT images, RT Structure Set, RT Dose and RT Plan were retrieved from the Treatment Planning System for programming. Utilizing the MATLAB program language, the decoding-encoding software applications were developed on the basis of the DICOM information object definitions. After tracing the clinical workflow and understanding the needs and expectations from radiation oncologists, a set of routines were written to parse key data items such as isodose curves, region of interests, dose-volume histogram from the DICOM-RT objects. Then graphical user interfaces (GUIs) were created to allow planners to query for parameters such as overdose or underdose areas. A total of 30 IMRT plans were collected in a Department of Clinical Oncology for systematic testing of the DICOM-based decision-support system. Both structural and functional tests were implemented as a major step on the road to software maturity. With promising test results, this decision-support system could represent a major breakthrough in the routine IMRT planning workflow.
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Fion W. K. Cheung, Fion W. K. Cheung, Maria Y. Y. Law, Maria Y. Y. Law, } "DICOM-based computer-aided evaluation of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) treatment plans", Proc. SPIE 7967, Medical Imaging 2011: Advanced PACS-based Imaging Informatics and Therapeutic Applications, 79670I (24 March 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.877512; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.877512

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