The effectiveness of 4DCT in children and adults: A pooled analysis

Sophie C. Huijskens, Irma W. E. M. van Dijk, Jorrit Visser, Brian V. Balgobind, Coen R. N. Rasch, Tanja Alderliesten, Arjan Bel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background: While four-dimensional computed tomography (4DCT) is extensively used in adults, reluctance remains to use 4DCT in children. Day-to-day (interfractional) variability and irregular respiration (intrafractional variability) have shown to be limiting factors of 4DCT effectiveness in adults. In order to evaluate 4DCT applicability in children, the purpose of this study is to quantify inter- and intrafractional variability of respiratory motion in children and adults. The pooled analysis enables a solid comparison to reveal if 4DCT application for planning purposes in children could be valid. Methods/materials: We retrospectively included 90 patients (45 children and 45 adults), for whom the diaphragm was visible on abdominal/thoracic free-breathing cone beam CTs (480 pediatric, 524 adult CBCTs). For each CBCT, the cranial–caudal position of end-exhale and end-inhale positions of the right diaphragm dome were manually selected in the projection images. The difference in position between both phases defines the amplitude. Cycle time equaled inspiratory plus expiratory time. We analyzed the variability of the inter- and intrafractional respiratory-induced diaphragm motion. Results: Ranges of respiratory motion characteristics were large in both children and adults (amplitude: 4–17 vs 5–24 mm, cycle time 2.1–3.9 vs 2.7–6.5 s). The mean amplitude was slightly smaller in children than in adults (10.7 vs 12.3 mm; P = 0.06). Interfractional amplitude variability was statistically significantly smaller in children than in adults (1.4 vs 2.2 mm; P = 0.00). Mean cycle time was statistically significantly shorter in children (2.9 vs 3.6 s; P = 0.00). Additionally, intrafractional cycle time variability was statistically significantly smaller in children (0.5 vs 0.7 s; P = 0.00). Conclusions: Overall variability is smaller in children than in adults, indicating that respiratory motion is more regular in children than in adults. This implies that a single pretreatment 4DCT could be a good representation of daily respiratory motion in children and will be at least equally beneficial for planning purposes as it is in adults.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)276-283
JournalJournal of applied clinical medical physics / American College of Medical Physics
Volume20
Issue number1
Early online date2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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