Realtime control of an addon multileaf collimator system for tracking applications in radiotherapy


Böhler Andreas

Nowadays, radiotherapy treatments are as highly conformal as possible. That is, only the tumour is being treated while the surrounding tissue only receives a minimum of radiation. However, some tumours, like lung tumours or prostate tumours are - e.g. because of breath - in constant motion. "Classic" radiotherapy treatments therefore include big security margins so that the whole area where the tumour moves in is irradiated with the tradeoff of irradiating healthy tissue, too.

One possible way to overcome this limitation is the use of tracking technology. A specialised system constantly monitors the position of the tumour while the leaves of the collimator system are in constant motion and try to catch up and compensate for the motion of the primary target volume.

Using the ModuLeaf addon collimator system (see the page about the Moduleaf in general for a basic description of the system) realtime control for tracking applications is being developed.

The control software of the system is reimplemented from the ground up with speed and reaction time being the main focus of development. Apart from the reimplementation of the software the system's complexity is decreased by making use of newer technology that enables the replacement of specialised realtime systems by sate-of-the-art computers. Ultimately, more precise and at the same time shorter treatments of moving targets will be possible using existing, readily-available hardware components.

We thank Siemens Oncology Care Systems for their kind support.

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