Radiation dose enhancement at tissue-tungsten interfaces in HDR brachytherapy
HDR BrachyView is a novel in-body dosimetric imaging system for real-time monitoring and verification of the source position in high dose rate (HDR) prostate brachytherapy treatment. It is based on a high-resolution pixelated detector array with a semi-cylindrical multi-pinhole tungsten collimator and is designed to fit inside a compact rectal probe, and is able to resolve the 3D position of the source with a maximum error of 1.5 mm. This paper presents an evaluation of the additional dose that will be delivered to the patient as a result of backscatter radiation from the collimator. Monte Carlo simulations of planar and cylindrical collimators embedded in a tissue-equivalent phantom were performed using Geant4, with an 192Ir source placed at two different source-collimator distances. The planar configuration was replicated experimentally to validate the simulations, with a MOSkin dosimetry probe used to measure dose at three distances from the collimator. For the cylindrical collimator simulation, backscatter dose enhancement was calculated as a function of axial and azimuthal displacement, and dose distribution maps were generated at three distances from the collimator surface. Although significant backscatter dose enhancement was observed for both geometries immediately adjacent to the collimator, simulations and experiments indicate that backscatter dose is negligible at distances beyond 1 mm from the collimator. Since HDR BrachyView is enclosed within a 1 mm thick tissue-equivalent plastic shell, all backscatter radiation resulting from its use will therefore be absorbed before reaching the rectal wall or other tissues.