A phantom study to evaluate three different registration platform of 3D/3D, 2D/3D, and 3D surface match with 6D alignment for precise image-guided radiotherapy

Hsiang Chi Kuo, Michael M. Lovelock, Guang Li, Åse Ballangrud, Brian Wolthuis, Cesar Della Biancia, Margie A. Hunt, Sean L. Berry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate two three-dimensional (3D)/3D registration platforms, one two-dimensional (2D)/3D registration method, and one 3D surface registration method (3DS). These three technologies are available to perform six-dimensional (6D) registrations for image-guided radiotherapy treatment. Methods: Fiducial markers were asymmetrically placed on the surfaces of an anthropomorphic head phantom (n = 13) and a body phantom (n = 8), respectively. The point match (PM) solution to the six-dimensional (6D) transformation between the two image sets [planning computed tomography (CT) and cone beam CT (CBCT)] was determined through least-square fitting of the fiducial positions using singular value decomposition (SVD). The transformation result from SVD was verified and was used as the gold standard to evaluate the 6D accuracy of 3D/3D registration in Varian’s platform (3D3DV), 3D/3D and 2D/3D registration in the BrainLab ExacTrac system (3D3DE and 2D3D), as well as 3DS in the AlignRT system. Image registration accuracy from each method was quantitatively evaluated by root mean square of target registration error (rmsTRE) on fiducial markers and by isocenter registration error (IRE). The Wilcoxon signed-rank test was utilized to compare the difference of each registration method with PM. A P < 0.05 was considered significant. Results: rmsTRE was in the range of 0.4 mm/0.7 mm (cranial/body), 0.5 mm/1 mm, 1.0 mm/1.5 mm, and 1.0 mm/1.2 mm for PM, 3D3D, 2D3D, and 3DS, respectively. Comparing to PM, the mean errors of IRE were 0.3 mm/1 mm for 3D3D, 0.5 mm/1.4 mm for 2D3D, and 1.6 mm/1.35 mm for 3DS for the cranial and body phantoms respectively. Both of 3D3D and 2D3D methods differed significantly in the roll direction as compared to the PM method for the cranial phantom. The 3DS method was significantly different from the PM method in all three translation dimensions for both the cranial (P = 0.003–P = 0.03) and body (P < 0.001–P = 0.008) phantoms. Conclusion: 3D3D using CBCT had the best image registration accuracy among all the tested methods. 2D3D method was slightly inferior to the 3D3D method but was still acceptable as a treatment position verification device. 3DS is comparable to 2D3D technique and could be a substitute for X-ray or CBCT for pretreatment verification for treatment of anatomical sites that are rigid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)188-196
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • IGRT
  • image registration
  • target registration error

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Instrumentation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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