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Atlas-Based Methods in Radiotherapy Treatment of Head and Neck Cancer

Hoang Duc, AK-B; (2015) Atlas-Based Methods in Radiotherapy Treatment of Head and Neck Cancer. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Radiotherapy is one of the principal methods for treating head and neck cancer (HNC). It plays an important role in the curative and palliative treatment of HNC. It uses high-energy radiation beams to kill cancer cells by damaging their DNA. Radiotherapy planning depends upon complex algorithms to determine the best trajectories and intensities of those beams by simulating their effects passing through designated areas. This requires accurate segmentation of anatomical structures and knowledge of the relative electron density within a patient body. Computed tomography (CT) has been the modality of choice in radiotherapy planning. It offers a wealth of anatomical information and is critical in providing information about the relative electron density of tissues required to calculate radiation deposited at any one site. Manual segmentation is time-consuming and is becoming impractical with the increasing demand in image acquisition for planning. Recently, planning solely based on magnetic resonance (MR) imaging has gained popularity as it provides superior soft tissue contrast compared to CT imaging and can better facilitate the process of segmentation. However, MR imaging does not provide electron density information for dose calculation. With the growing volumes of data and data repositories, algorithms based on atlases have gained popularity as they provide prior information for structure segmentation and tissue classification. In this PhD thesis, I demonstrate that atlas-based methods can be used for segmenting head and neck structures giving results as comparable as manual segmentation. In addition, I demonstrate that those methods can be used to support radiotherapy treatment solely based on MR imaging by generating synthetic CT images. The radiation doses calculated from a synthetic and real CT image agreed well, showing the clinical feasibility of methods based on atlases. In conclusion, I show that atlas-based methods are clinically relevant in radiotherapy treatment.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Atlas-Based Methods in Radiotherapy Treatment of Head and Neck Cancer
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Med Phys and Biomedical Eng
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1470459
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