Evidence of Limited Motion of the Prostate by Carefully Emptying the Rectum as Assessed by Daily MVCT Image Guidance with Helical Tomotherapy

Claudio Fiorino, Nadia Di Muzio, Sara Broggi, Cesare Cozzarini, Eleonora Maggiulli, Filippo Alongi, Riccardo Valdagni, Ferruccio Fazio, Riccardo Calandrino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To assess setup and organ motion error by means of analysis of daily megavoltage computed tomography (MVCT) of patients treated with hypofractionated helical tomotherapy (71.4-74.2 Gy in 28 fractions). Methods and Materials: Data from 21 patients were analyzed. Patients were instructed to empty the rectum carefully before planning CT and every morning before therapy by means of a self-applied rectal enema. The position of the prostate was assessed by means of automatic bone matching (BM) with the planning kilovoltage CT (BM, setup error) followed by a direct visualization (DV) match on the prostate. Deviations between planning and therapy positions referred to BM and BM + DV were registered for the three main axes. In case of a full rectum at MVCT with evident shift of the prostate, treatment was postponed until after additional rectal emptying procedures; in this case, additional MVCT was performed before delivering the treatment. Data for 522 fractions were available; the impact of post-MVCT procedure was investigated for 17 of 21 patients (410 fractions). Results: Prostate motion relative to bony anatomy was limited. Concerning posterior-anterior shifts, only 4.9% and 2.7% of fractions showed deviation of 3 mm or greater of the prostate relative to BM without and with consideration of post-MVCT procedures, respectively. Interobserver variability for BM + DV match was within 0.8 mm (1 SD). Conclusions: Daily MVCT-based correction is feasible. The BM + DV matching was found to be consistent between operators. Rectal emptying using a daily enema is an efficient tool to minimize prostate motion, even for centers that have not yet implemented image-guided radiotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)611-617
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2008


  • Image-guided radiotherapy
  • Intensity-modulated radiotherapy
  • Organ motion
  • Prostate
  • Tomotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiation

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