Publication Details

Al-Rahbi, Z. S., Cutajar, D. L., Metcalfe, P. & Rosenfeld, A. B. (2018). Dosimetric effects of brass mesh bolus on skin dose and dose at depth for postmastectomy chest wall irradiation. Physica Medica: an international journal devoted to the applications of physics to medicine and biology, 54 84-93.


Purpose: To investigate the feasibility of using the brass mesh bolus as an alternative to tissue- equivalent bolus for post mastectomy chest wall cancer by characterizing the dosimetric effects of the 2-mm fine brass bolus on both the skin dose, the dose at depth and spatial distribution.

Materials and methods: Surface dose and percent depth dose data were acquired for a 6 MV photon beam in a solid water phantom using MOSkin™ Gafchromic EBT3 film and an Advanced Markus ionization chamber. Data were acquired for the case of: no bolus, Face-up bass bolus, Face-down brass bolus, double brass bolus, 0.5 cm and 1.0 cm of Superflab TE bolus. The exit doses were also measured via MOSkin™ dosimeter and Markus ionization chamber. Gafchromic EBT3 film strips were used to plot dose profile at surface and 10 cm depth for Face-up brass, Face-down brass, double brass, 0.5 cm and 1.0 cm of Superflab TE bolus.

Results: The surface dose measured via MOSkin™ dosimeter increased from 19.2 ± 1.0% to 63.1 ± 2.1% under Face-up brass discs, 51.2 ± 1.2% under Face-up brass spaces, 61.5 ± 0.5% under Face-down brass discs, and 41.3 ± 2.1% under Face-down brass spaces. The percentage difference in the dose measured under brass discs between Face-up versus Face-down was less than 2% for entrance dose and 10% for exit dose, whereas the percentage difference under brass spaces was approximately 3% for entrance dose and about 5% for the exit dose. Gafchromic EBT3 film strip measurements show that the mesh bolus produced ripple beam profiles due to the mesh brass construction.

Conclusions: Brass bolus does not significantly change dose at depth (less than 0.5%), and the surface dose is increased similar to TE bolus. Considering this, brass mesh may be used as a substitute for TE bolus to increase superficial dose for chest wall tangent plans.

Available for download on Wednesday, October 02, 2019



Link to publisher version (DOI)