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Dosimetric verification and commissioning for a small animal image-guided irradiator

In recent years, small animal image-guided irradiators have been widely utilized in preclinical studies involving rodent models. However, the dosimetry commissioning of such equipment involving kilovoltage small-field dosimetry has not received as much interest as the megavoltage small-field dosimetry used clinically. To date, a paucity of measured kilovoltage beam data, especially for field sizes less than 3 mm, can be found in the literature. For improvement of rodent treatments in the future, this work aims to provide comprehensive and accurate beam data for the small animal radiation research platform (SARRP, Xstrahl) using EBT3 Gafchromic films and Monte Carlo calculation, with submillimeter resolution and accuracy. This work includes three primary tasks: (1) establish an optimized film measurement protocol for small field dosimetry of kilovoltage photon beam. (2) Acquire dosimetric data including (a) depth dose curves from the surface to 6 cm depth (b) beam profiles, (c) penumbra, (d) cone factors and (e) 2D dose distribution. These tasks were undertaken for a 220 kVp photon beam with five different small field widths and 33 cm source to surface distance (0.5 mm and 1 mm circular fields, 3  ×  3 mm2, 5  ×  5 mm2, 10  ×  10 mm2 square fields). Beam data was measured with EBT3 films. (3) Provide comparative dosimetry for film measurements, Monte Carlo calculations, and the dose calculations performed with the SARRP treatment planning system, Muriplan. For the majority of parameters, film measurement agreed with Monte Carlo simulation within 1%. There were, however, discrepancies between measured beam data and Muriplan treatment planning data. Specifically, for PDD, Muriplan underestimates the dose for field sizes of 0.5 mm and 1 mm. For beam profiles comparisons, the calculation from Muriplan predicts a smaller lateral distance between the 50% isodose lines compared to film measurement. There is a difference of 0.18, 0.72, 0.6 mm between Muriplan and film for field sizes of 3, 5, 10 mm, respectively. This work demonstrates that accurate and precise kilovoltage small-field dosimetry can be conducted using EBT3 Gafchromic film with an optimized protocol. In addition, discrepancies between measured beam data and Muriplan were identified.

Wang YF, Lin SC, Na YH, Black PJ, Wuu CS.

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