Purpose: To compare the effectiveness of tomotherapy and three-dimensional (3D) conformal radiotherapy to spare normal critical structures (spinal cord, lungs, and ventricles) from excessive radiation in patients with distal esophageal cancers. Materials and methods: A retrospective dosimetric study of nine patients who had advanced gastro-esophageal (GE) junction cancer (7) or thoracic esophageal cancer (2) extending into the distal esophagus. Two plans were created for each of the patients. A three-dimensional plan was constructed with either three (anteroposterior, right posterior oblique, and left posterior oblique) or four (right anterior oblique, left anterior oblique, right posterior oblique, and left posterior oblique) fields. The second plan was for tomotherapy. Doses were 45 Gy to the PTV with an integrated boost of 5 Gy for tomotherapy. Results: Mean lung dose was respectively 7.4 and 11.8 Gy (p = 0.004) for tomotherapy and 3D plans. Corresponding values were 12.4 and 18.3 Gy (p = 0.006) for cardiac ventricles. Maximum spinal cord dose was respectively 31.3 and 37.4 Gy (p < 0.007) for tomotherapy and 3D plans. Homogeneity index was two for both groups. Conclusions: Compared to 3D conformal radiotherapy, tomotherapy decreased significantly the amount of normal tissue irradiated and may reduce treatment toxicity for possible dose escalation in future prospective studies.
- Distal esophageal cancer
- Normal tissue sparing
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging