From AAA to Acuros XB-clinical implications of selecting either Acuros XB dose-to-water or dose-to-medium

  • Jackson M. ZifodyaEmail author
  • Cameron H. C. Challens
  • Wen-Long Hsieh
Scientific Paper


When implementing Acuros XB (AXB) as a substitute for anisotropic analytic algorithm (AAA) in the Eclipse Treatment Planning System, one is faced with a dilemma of reporting either dose to medium, AXB-Dm or dose to water, AXB-Dw. To assist with decision making on selecting either AXB-Dm or AXB-Dw for dose reporting, a retrospective study of treated patients for head & neck (H&N), prostate, breast and lung is presented. Ten patients, previously treated using AAA plans, were selected for each site and re-planned with AXB-Dm and AXB-Dw. Re-planning was done with fixed monitor units (MU) as well as non-fixed MUs. Dose volume histograms (DVH) of targets and organs at risk (OAR), were analyzed in conjunction with ICRU-83 recommended dose reporting metrics. Additionally, comparisons of plan homogeneity indices (HI) and MUs were done to further highlight the differences between the algorithms. Results showed that, on average AAA overestimated dose to the target volume and OARs by less than 2.0 %. Comparisons between AXB-Dw and AXB-Dm, for all sites, also showed overall dose differences to be small (<1.5 %). However, in non-water biological media, dose differences between AXB-Dw and AXB-Dm, as large as 4.6 % were observed. AXB-Dw also tended to have unexpectedly high 3D maximum dose values (>135 % of prescription dose) for target volumes with high density materials. Homogeneity indices showed that AAA planning and optimization templates would need to be adjusted only for the H&N and Lung sites. MU comparison showed insignificant differences between AXB-Dw relative to AAA and between AXB-Dw relative to AXB-Dm. However AXB-Dm MUs relative to AAA, showed an average difference of about 1.3 % signifying an underdosage by AAA. In conclusion, when dose is reported as AXB-Dw, the effect that high density structures in the PTV has on the dose distribution should be carefully considered. As the results show overall small dose differences between the algorithms, when transitioning from AAA to AXB, no significant change to existing prescription protocols is expected. As most of the clinical experience is dose-to-water based and calibration protocols and clinical trials are also dose-to-water based and there still exists uncertainties in converting CT number to medium, selecting AXB-Dw is strongly recommended.


Treatment planning Dose-volume analysis Monte Carlo Acuros XB Anisotropic analytical algorithm IMRT 


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Copyright information

© Australasian College of Physical Scientists and Engineers in Medicine 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.North West Cancer CentreTamworth Rural Referral HospitalTamworthAustralia

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