Observed high incidence of prostatic calculi with the potential to act as natural fiducials for prostate image guided radiotherapy

A.G.M O'Neill, S.O Osman, S. Jain, A.R. Hounsell, J.M O'Sullivan

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Purpose This study aims to quantify the incidence and distribution of prostatic calculi in a population of prostate radiotherapy patients and assess their potential role in prostate image guided radiotherapy (IGRT). Methods & materials A retrospective analysis of trans-rectal ultrasound (TRUS), computed tomography (CT) planning and treatment verification cone beam CT (CBCT) scans from radical prostate radiotherapy patients (external beam and brachytherapy) between 2012 and 2014 was undertaken by a single experienced observer. An internationally validated schema from the Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data system (PIRADS) was used to map the location of calculi. The association of calculi with patient and disease characteristics was explored. Data was analysed using SPSS (IBM version 22.0) using descriptive statistical methods and logistic binary regression analysis. Results 389 scan sets from 254 patients were included in the analysis. The overall incidence of calculi was 85% (n = 218) of which 79% (n = 201) were intra-prostatic calculi. The mean number of intra-prostatic calculi was 2 (range 1–10) and the mean size of calculi was 3.7 mm (range 0.5–15 mm). Calculi were most frequently observed in the posterior of the mid-gland (PI-RADs 3p, 9p) and posterior of the apex (PI-RADs 5p, 11p). 99% (n = 135) of CT planning scans with a corresponding CBCT had calculi in the same PIRADs location and all calculi were visible at the last fraction. There was no statistically significant association of calculi and N stage, M stage or Gleason score. Conclusions A significant proportion of prostate radiotherapy patients have prostatic calculi detectable on pre radiotherapy imaging. Calculi observed on CT were also detectable on CBCT in 99% of cases and remain visible at the end of treatment. These findings add to the growing evidence base supporting the potential of calculi as an alternative to fiducial markers to aid prostate IGRT.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-40
Number of pages6
JournalTechnical Innovations & Patient Support in Radiation Oncology
Publication statusPublished - 12 Mar 2019

Bibliographical note

Crown Copyright © 2019 Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of European Society for Radiotherapy & Oncology.


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