Prostate displacement during transabdominal ultrasound image-guided radiotherapy assessed by real-time four-dimensional transperineal monitoring
Background. Transabdominal ultrasound (TAUS) imaging is currently available for localizing the prostate in daily image-guided radiotherapy (IGRT). The aim of this study was to determine the induced prostate displacement during such TAUS imaging. The prostate displacement was monitored using a novel transperineal four-dimensional (4D) US (TPUS) system.
Material and methods. Ten prostate cancer patients, with a mean age of 68 years (58/76), were US scanned in the computed tomography (CT) room utilizing the Clarity 4D TPUS monitoring system. The patients were asked to comply with a moderate bladder filling protocol. After US-CT fusion, the prostate volume was delineated and used as a reference for weekly US imaging in the treatment room. Immediately after treatment delivery the TPUS monitoring system was set up. During real-time monitoring of the prostate, a conventional 2D probe was applied to simulate a TAUS scan. The time dependent prostate displacements induced by the 2D probe pressure were recorded for the three orthogonal directions. In total 42 monitoring curves with applied 2D probe were recorded.
Results. Data analysis of 42 US scans resulted in pressure induced prostate displacements with mean values (± 1 SD) (mm); inferior (+)-superior (I/S): (−0.1 ± 0.8); left (+)-right (L/R): (0.2 ± 0.7); and anterior (+)-posterior (A/P): (−0.1 ± 1.0). The majority of the displacements were within 1–2 mm. Only two scans (5%) (A/P direction) and 16% of Euclidean distances were larger than 2.0 mm. The largest displacement was 2.6 mm in the anterior direction.
Conclusion. The novel 4D TPUS system was capable of tracking and recording the prostate positional displacements. The study demonstrated that the prostate induced displacements due to applied TAUS IGRT are small, and in most cases clinically irrelevant to prostate radiotherapy.