Analysis of prostate and seminal vesicle motion: Implications for treatment planning

Clair J. Beard, Peter Kijewski, Marc Bussière, Rebecca Gelman, David Gladstone, Kitt Shaffer, Marianne Plunkett, Philip Costello, C. Norman Coleman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To quantify prostate and seminal vesicle positional changes (target motion) between treatment planning and delivery, and to identify the factors contributing to target motion. Methods and Materials: Thirty patients with adenocarcinoma of the prostate were prospectively evaluated by analyzing two sequential planning computerized tomography (CT) scans (S1, obtained prior to treatment, and S2, obtained during the fourth week of treatment) for each patient. All anatomical volumes of interest (soft tissue and bony) were reconstructed from transverse CT images and projected onto anterior and lateral beam's-eye view projections. Positional changes between S1 and S2 were eliminated by applying a rigid body translation and rotation. Target motion was then measured by recording the positional change between S1 and S2 at the edges (right, left, superior, inferior). Potential correlation of target motion with bladder volume, rectal volume, and rectal diameter changes were evaluated by linear regression analysis. Results: Neither the prostate nor seminal vesicles remained fixed with respect to bony anatomy between S1 and S2 The distribution of positional changes were generally small (< 0.5 cm), but maximum displacements of 1.5-2.2 cm did occur, particularly in the lateral view. In this study, bladder volume changes between the scans were small and did not correlate with target motion (p = 0.67). Both rectal volume and rectal diameter changes correlated with target motion for both the prostate (p = 0.004 and 0.005, respectively) and seminal vesicles (p < 0.001 and < 0.001, respectively). However, neither the initial rectal volume nor the initial rectal diameter could be used to predict subsequent target motion when evaluated either singly or as part of a multiple regression model. Conclusions: Target motion occurs during the course of treatment planning and delivery and should be considered when designing conformal radiation fields. Although the target position at the time of planning CT may differ substantially from the mean treatment position, target motion cannot be predicted by evaluating simply measured parameters from a single scan, or double scan sequence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)451-458
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 1996


  • Conformal therapy
  • Prostate neoplasm
  • Radiation therapy
  • Treatment planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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