A novel external/internal tumor tracking approach to compensate for respiratory motion baseline drifts

Marta K. Giżyńska*, Yvette Seppenwoolde, Warren Kilby, Ben J.M. Heijmen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective. Real-time respiratory tumor tracking as implemented in a robotic treatment unit is based on continuous optical measurement of the position of external markers and a correlation model between them and internal target positions, which are established with X-ray imaging of the tumor, or fiducials placed in or around the tumor. Correlation models are created with fifteen simultaneously measured external/internal marker position pairs divided over the respiratory cycle. Every 45-150 s, the correlation model is updated by replacing the three first acquired data pairs with three new pairs. Tracking simulations for >120.000 computer-generated respiratory tracks demonstrated that this tracking approach resulted in relevant inaccuracies in internal target position predictions, especially in case of presence of respiratory motion baseline drifts. Approach. To better cope with drifts, we introduced a novel correlation model with an explicit time dependence, and we proposed to replace the currently applied linear-motion tracking (LMT) by mixed-model tracking (MMT). In MMT, the linear correlation model is extended with an explicit time dependence in case of a detected baseline drift. MMT prediction accuracies were then established for the same >120.000 computer-generated patients as used for LMT. Main results. For 150 s update intervals, MMT outperformed LMT in internal target position prediction accuracy for 93.7 ∣ 97.2% of patients with 0.25 ∣ 0.5 mm min−1 linear respiratory motion baseline drifts with similar numbers of X-ray images and similar treatment times. For the upper 25% of patients, mean 3D internal target position prediction errors reduced by 0.7 ∣ 1.8 mm, while near maximum reductions (upper 10% of patients) were 0.9 ∣ 2.0 mm. Significance. For equal numbers of acquired X-ray images, MMT greatly improved tracking accuracy compared to LMT, especially in the presence of baseline drifts. Even with almost 50% less acquired X-ray images, MMT still outperformed LMT in internal target position prediction accuracy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number055017
JournalPhysics in Medicine and Biology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2023

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© 2023 Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.


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