Obtaining Normal Tissue Constraints Using Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT) in Patients with Oral Cavity, Oropharnygeal, and Laryngeal Carcinoma

William K.J. Skinner, Evan D. Muse, Ravindra Yaparpalvi, Chandan Guha, Madhur K. Garg, Shalom Kalnicki

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The purpose of this study was to evaluate normal tissue dose constraints while maintaining planning target volume (PTV) prescription without reducing PTV margins. Sixteen patients with oral cavity carcinoma (group I), 27 patients with oropharyngeal carcinoma (group II), and 28 patients with laryngeal carcinoma (group III) were reviewed. Parotid constraints were a mean dose to either parotid < 26 Gy (PP1), 50% of either parotid < 30 Gy (PP2), or 20 cc of total parotid < 20 Gy (PP3). Treatment was intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) with simultaneous integrated boost (SIB). All patients met constraints for cord and brain stem. The mandibular constraints were met in 66%, 29%, and 57% of patients with oral, oropharyngeal, and laryngeal cancers, respectively. Mean dose of 26 Gy (PP1) was achieved in 44%, 41%, and 38% of oral, oropharyngeal, and laryngeal patients. PP2 (parotid constraint of 30 Gy to less than 50% of one parotid) was the easiest to achieve (group I, II, and III: 82%, 76%, and 78%, respectively). PP3 (20 cc of total parotid < 20 Gy) was difficult, and was achieved in 25%, 17%, and 35% of oral, oropharyngeal, and laryngeal patients, respectively. Mean parotid dose of 26 Gy was met 40% of the time. However, a combination of constraints allowed for sparing of the parotid based on different criteria and was met in high numbers. This was accomplished without reducing PTV-parotid overlap. What dose constraint best correlates with subjective and objective functional outcomes remains a focus for future study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)279-284
Number of pages6
JournalMedical Dosimetry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2009



  • Head-and-neck cancer
  • IMRT
  • Normal tissue constraints
  • Parotid sparing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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