Software that finds similar Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) cases of radiation therapy in a database, compares features of therapy and anatomy, and provides treatment recommendations based on these prior cases.
- Decreases treatment plan time and increases efficiency of delivery.
- Decreases organ-at-risk (OAR) and normal tissue exposure.
- Makes recommendations to the treatment planner automatically and quickly.
Nearly 50% of all cancer patients in the world will require radiation therapy at some point. Radiation therapy planning has its limitations. The standard approach involves a trial and error process that is not automated and is not based on prior knowledge or existing databases. The lack of these features can increase planning time and decrease efficiency in the treatment plan. A VMAT treatment plan was recently developed, which improves upon the typical Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) or Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) treatment, but has been neither optimized nor automatized. As new technology and radiation therapy equipment become available, additional software modules that support them will be needed in order to enable physicians to decide on optimum courses of treatment.
VMAT is an inverse treatment planning process that optimizes the intensity of radiation according to dose-volume histogram (DVH) constraints established by the therapy planner who must balance treatment between sparing normal tissue and irradiating the tumor. Unfortunately, attainable DVH objectives for each individual patient and his anatomy are not known before planning, which results in a process of educated guesses, rounds of optimization, and readjustments of the constraints according to the dosimetrist’s personal experience. Emory researchers have developed software that searches the metadata, images, and other information within a database to retrieve previous cases that match in similarity and then suggest irradiation settings and attainable constraints based on the results. This approach speeds up and automatizes the planning process while providing a customized plan for each individual patient.
- Software was developed for prostate cases and can be adapted in clinical practice.
- Emory-based database of images potentially available.