To investigate how accurately treatment planning systems (TPSs) account for the tongue-and-groove (TG) effect, Monte Carlo (MC) simulations and radiochromic film (RCF) measurements were performed for comparison with TPS results. Two commercial TPSs computed the TG effect for Varian Millennium 120 multileaf collimator (MLC). The TG effect on off-axis dose profile at 3 depths of solid water was estimated as the maximum depth and the full width at half maximum (FWHM) of the dose dip at an interleaf position. When compared with the off-axis dose of open field, the maximum depth of the dose dip for MC and RCF ranged from 10.1% to 20.6%; the maximum depth of the dose dip gradually decreased by up to 8.7% with increasing depths of 1.5 to 10 cm and also by up to 4.1% with increasing off-axis distances of 0 to 13 cm. However, TPS results showed at most a 2.7% decrease for the same depth range and a negligible variation for the same off-axis distances. The FWHM of the dose dip was approximately 0.19 cm for MC and 0.17 cm for RCF, but 0.30 cm for Eclipse TPS and 0.45 cm for Pinnacle TPS. Accordingly, the integrated value of TG dose dip for TPS was larger than that for MC and RCF and almost invariant along the depths and off-axis distances. We concluded that the TG dependence on depth and off-axis doses shown in the MC and RCF results could not be appropriately modeled by the TPS versions in this study.
- Monte carlo
- Tongue-and-groove effect
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging