Progress in radiotherapy is guided by the need to realize improved dose distributions, i.e. the ability to reduce the treatment volume toward the target volume and still ensuring coverage of that target volume in all dimensions. These advancements are usually not to be attributed to a single event, but rather a combination of many small improvements that together enable a superior result. Image-guidance is an important link in the treatment chain and as such a major factor in this synergetic process. Image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT) aims at instant knowledge of the tumour volume location during irradiation or alternatively studying the motion and volume changes of the target volume allowing management of these effects in the treatment planning process. TheLimited ability to control the tumour's location, compromises the accuracy with which radiation can be delivered to tumour-bearing tissue. The resultant larger treatment volumes required to accommodate target uncertainty may limit the radiation dose, owing to the larger amounts of surrounding normal tissue exposure. With IGRT these volumes can be optimized and tumouricidal doses may be delivered, achieving maximum tumour control with minimal complications. Moreover, with the ability of high precision dose delivery and real-time knowledge of the target volume location, IGRT has initiated the exploration of new indications in radiotherapy, previously considered not-feasible.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Belgian Journal of Medical Oncology|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|