Measurement-based Monte Carlo dose calculation system for IMRT pretreatment and on-line transit dose verifications

Mu Han Lin, Tsi Chian Chao, Chung Chi Lee, Chuan Jong Tung, Chie Yi Yeh, Ji Hong Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


The aim of this study was to develop a dose simulation system based on portal dosimetry measurements and the BEAM Monte Carlo code for intensity-modulated (IM) radiotherapy dose verification. This measurement-based Monte Carlo (MBMC) system can perform, within one systematic calculation, both pretreatment and on-line transit dose verifications. BEAMnrc and DOSXYZnrc 2006 were used to simulate radiation transport from the treatment head, through the patient, to the plane of the aS500 electronic portal imaging device (EPID). In order to represent the nonuniform fluence distribution of an IM field within the MBMC simulation, an EPID-measured efficiency map was used to redistribute particle weightings of the simulated phase space distribution of an open field at a plane above a patient/phantom. This efficiency map was obtained by dividing the measured energy fluence distribution of an IM field to that of an open field at the EPID plane. The simulated dose distribution at the midplane of a homogeneous polystyrene phantom was compared to the corresponding distribution obtained from the Eclipse treatment planning system (TPS) for pretreatment verification. It also generated a simulated transit dose distribution to serve as the on-line verification reference for comparison to that measured by the EPID. Two head-and-neck (NPC1 and NPC2) and one prostate cancer fields were tested in this study. To validate the accuracy of the MBMC system, film dosimetry was performed and served as the dosimetry reference. Excellent agreement between the film dosimetry and the MBMC simulation was obtained for pretreatment verification. For all three cases tested, gamma evaluation with 3%/3 mm criteria showed a high pass percentage (<99.7%) within the area in which the dose was greater than 30% of the maximum dose. In contrast to the TPS, the MBMC system was able to preserve multileaf collimator delivery effects such as the tongue-and-groove effect and interleaf leakage. In the NPC1 field, the TPS showed 16.5% overdose due to the tongue-and-groove effect and 14.6% overdose due to improper leaf stepping. Similarly, in the NPC2 field, the TPS showed 14.1% overdose due to the tongue-and-groove effect and 8.9% overdose due to improper leaf stepping. In the prostate cancer field, the TPS showed 6.8% overdose due to improper leaf stepping. No tongue-and-groove effect was observed for this field. For transit dose verification, agreements among the EPID measurement, the film dosimetry, and the MBMC system were also excellent with a minimum gamma pass percentage of 99.6%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1167-1175
Number of pages9
JournalMedical physics
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2009



  • IMRT dose verification
  • Measurement-based simulation
  • Monte Carlo
  • electronic portal imaging
  • transit dosimetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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