Background and purpose: As an alternative to whole breast irradiation in early breast cancer, a variety of accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) techniques have been investigated. The purpose of our study is to compare the dosimetry of four different external beam APBI (EB-APBI) plans: three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT), intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), helical tomotherapy (TOMO), and proton beam therapy (PBT).
Methods and materials: Thirty patients were included in the study, and plans for four techniques were developed for each patient. A total dose of 30Gy in 6Gy fractions once daily was prescribed in all treatment plans.
Results: In the analysis of the non-PTV breast volume that was delivered 50% of the prescribed dose (PD), PBT (mean: 16.5%) was superior to TOMO (mean: 22.8%), IMRT (mean: 33.3%), and 3D-CRT (mean: 40.9%) (p<0.001). The average ipsilateral lung volume percentage receiving 20% of the PD was significantly lower in PBT (0.4%) and IMRT (2.3%) compared with 3D-CRT (6.0%) and TOMO (14.2%) (p<0.001). The average heart volume percentage receiving 20% and 10% of the PD in left-sided breast cancer (N=19) was significantly larger with TOMO (8.0%, 19.4%) compared to 3D-CRT (1.5%, 3.1%), IMRT (1.2%, 4.0%), and PBT (0%, 0%) (p<0.001).
Conclusions: All four EB-APBI techniques showed acceptable coverage of the PTV. However, effective non-PTV breast sparing was achieved at the cost of considerable dose exposure to the lung and heart in TOMO.