Design and production of 3D printed bolus for electron radiation therapy
This is a proof-of-concept study demonstrating the capacity for modulated electron radiation therapy (MERT) using 3D printed bolus. In this study, an in-house algorithm is presented that optimizes the dose distribution with regard to dose coverage, conformity and homogeneity within planning target volume (PTV). The process is iterated (usually twice) until an acceptable MERT plan is realized, and the final bolus is printed using solid polylactic acid. The method is evaluated with regular geometric phantoms, anthropomorphic phantoms and a clinical rhabdomyosarcoma pediatric case. In all cases the dose conformity is improved compared to that with uniform bolus. The printed boluses conform well to the surface of complex anthropomorphic phantoms. MERT using 3D printed bolus appears to be a practical, low cost approach to generating optimized bolus for electron therapy. The method is effective in improving conformity of prescription isodose surface and in sparing immediately adjacent normal tissues.