Purpose: This study aimed to evaluate (1) the performance of the Auto-Planning module embedded in the Pinnacle treatment planning system (TPS) with 30 left-side breast cancer plans and (2) the dose-distance correlations between dose-based patients and overlap volume histogram-based (OVH) patients.
Method: A total of 30 patients with left-side breast cancer after breast-conserving surgery were enrolled in this study. The clinical manual-planning (MP) and the Auto-Planning (AP) plans were generated by Monaco and by the Auto-Planning module in Pinnacle respectively. The geometric information between organ at risk (OAR) and planning target volume (PTV) of each patient was described by the OVH. The AP and MP plans were ranked to compare with the geometry-based patients from OVH. The Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient (R) was used to describe the correlations between dose-based patients (APs and MPs) and geometry-based patients (OVH). Dosimetric differences between MP and AP plans were evaluated with statistical analysis.
Result: The correlation coefficient (mean R = 0.71) indicated that the AP plans have a high correlation with geometry-based patients from OVH, whereas the correlation coefficient (mean R = 0.48) shows a weak correlation between MP plans and geometry-based patients. For different indicators, the dose distribution of V5Gy in the ipsilateral lung (AP: mean R = 0.82; MP: mean R = 0.58) is more relevant to geometry-based patients compared to the dose distribution of in the heart (AP: mean R = 0.4; MP: mean R = 0.19). The dosimetric comparison revealed a statistically significant improvement in ipsilateral lung V5Gy and V10Gy and in the heart V5Gy of AP plans compared to MP plans.
Conclusion: The overall results of AP plans were superior to MP plans. The dose distribution in AP plans was more consistent with the distance-dose relationship described by OVH. After eliminating the interference of human factors, the AP was able to provide more stable and objective plans for radiotherapy patients.