Department of Radiation Oncology, Cheng-Ching General Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.
The aim of this article is to report the dosimetric and clinical findings in the treatment of primary hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) with volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT, RapidArc).
METHODS AND MATERIALS:
A total of 138 patients were investigated. Dose prescription ranged from 45-66 Gy. Most patients (88.4 %) presented AJCC stage III or IV and 83 % were N0-M0. All were classified as Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) stage A-C. All patients were treated using 10 MV photons with single or multiple, coplanar or non-coplanar arcs, and cone-down technique in case of early response of tumors.
The patients' median age was 66 years (range 27-87 years), 83 % were treated with 60 Gy (12 % at 45 Gy, 6 % at 66 Gy), 62 % with cone-down, 98 % with multiple arcs. The mean initial planning target volume (PTV) was 777 ± 632 cm3; the mean final PTV (after the cone-down) was 583 ± 548 cm3. High target coverage was achieved. The final PTV was V98% > 98 %. Kidneys received on average 5 and 8 Gy (left and right), while the maximum dose to the spinal cord was 22 Gy; mean doses to esophagus and stomach were 23 Gy and 15 Gy, respectively. The average volume of healthy liver receiving more than 30 Gy was 294 ± 145 cm3. Overall survival at 12 months was 45 %; median survival was 10.3 months (95 % confidence interval 7.2-13.3 months). Actuarial local control at 6 months was 95 % and 93.7 % at 12 months. The median follow-up was 9 months and a maximum of 28 months.
This study showed from the dosimetric point of view the feasibility and technical appropriateness of RapidArc for the treatment of HCC. Clinical results were positive and might suggest, with appropriate care, to consider RapidArc as an additional therapeutic opportunity for these patients.