Quantifying Allowable Motion to Achieve Safe Dose Escalation in Pancreatic SBRT

Yijun Ding, Warren G. Campbell, Moyed Miften, Yevgeniy Vinogradskiy, Karyn A. Goodman, Tracey Schefter, Bernard L. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Purpose: Tumor motion plays a key role in the safe delivery of stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) for pancreatic cancer. The purpose of this study was to use tumor motion measured in patients to establish limits on motion magnitude for safe delivery of pancreatic SBRT and to help guide motion-management decisions in potential dose-escalation scenarios. Methods and Materials: Using 91 sets of pancreatic tumor motion data, we calculated the motion-convolved dose of the gross tumor volume, duodenum, and stomach for 25 patients with pancreatic cancer. We derived simple linear or quadratic models relating motion to changes in dose and used these models to establish the maximum amount of motion allowable while satisfying error thresholds on key dose metrics. In the same way, we studied the effects of dose escalation and tumor volume on allowable motion. Results: In our patient cohort, the mean (range) allowable motion for 33, 40, and 50 Gy to the planning target volume was 11.9 (6.3-22.4), 10.4 (5.2-19.1), and 9.0 (4.2-16.0) mm, respectively. The maximum allowable motion decreased as the dose was escalated and was smaller in patients with larger tumors. We found significant differences in allowable motion between the different plans, suggesting a patient-specific approach to motion management is possible. Conclusions: The effects of motion on pancreatic SBRT are highly variable among patients, and there is potential to allow more motion in certain patients, even in dose-escalated scenarios. In our dataset, a conservative limit of 6.3 mm would ensure safe treatment of all patients treated to 33 Gy in 5 fractions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e432-e442
JournalPractical Radiation Oncology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


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