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The technical feasibility of Partial Breast Irradiation (PBI) using external beam radiotherapy depends on the ratio between the evaluation planning target volume (PTV_eval) and the whole breast volume ("PBI volume ratio" = PVR). We aimed to develop a simple method to determine PVR using measurements performed at the time of the planning CT scan. A PVR calculation tool was developed using a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet to determine the PTV from three orthogonal dimensions of the seroma cavity and a given margin on the CT scans. The breast volume is estimated from the separation and breast height in five equally spaced CT slices. The PTV_eval and whole breast volume were determined for 29 patients from two centres using the spreadsheet calculation tool and compared to volumes delineated on computerised treatment planning systems. Both the PTV_eval and whole breast volumes were underestimated by approximately 25% using the spreadsheet. The resulting PVRs were 1.05 +/- 0.35 (mean +/- 1SD) times larger than the ones determined from planning. Estimations of the PVR using the calculation tool were achievable in around 5 minutes at the time of CT scanning and allow a prompt decision on the suitability of the patients for PBI.

Original publication




Journal article


Australas Phys Eng Sci Med

Publication Date





98 - 104


Breast, Breast Neoplasms, Female, Humans, Organ Size, Radiometry, Software