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Background and purpose: The aim of this study was to develop and validate a method to select head and neck cancer patients for adaptive radiotherapy (ART) pre-treatment. Potential pre-treatment selection criteria presented in recent literature were included in the analysis.

Materials and methods: Deviations from the planned parotid gland mean dose (PG Delta Dmean) were estimated for 113 head and neck cancer patients by re-calculating plans on repeat CT scans. Uni- and multivariable linear regression analyses were performed to select pre-treatment parameters, and ROC curve analysis was used to determine cut off values, for selecting patients with a PG dose deviation larger than 3 Gy. The patient selection method was validated in a second patient cohort of 43 patients.

Results: After multivariable analysis, the planned PG Dmean remained the only significant parameter for PG Delta Dmean. A sensitivity of 91% and 80% could be obtained using a threshold of PG Dmean of 22.2 Gy, for the development and validation cohorts, respectively. This would spare 38% (development cohort) and 24% (validation cohort) of patients from the labour-intensive ART procedure.

Conclusions: The presented method to select patients for ART pre-treatment reduces the labour of ART, contributing to a more effective allocation of the department resources. (C) 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-40
Number of pages5
JournalRadiotherapy and Oncology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul-2016


  • Head and neck
  • Parotid glands
  • Dosimetric changes
  • Adaptive radiotherapy
  • Patient selection
  • Xerostomia
  • IMRT
  • RISK

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