PURPOSE: To evaluate the permanent prostate brachytherapy (PPB) learning curve using postimplant multisector dosimetric analysis and to assess the correlation between sector -specific dosimetry and patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs).
METHODS AND METHODS: First 200 patients treated with (125)I PPB monotherapy (145 Gy) at a single institution were assessed. Postimplant dosimetry (PID) using CT was evaluated for whole prostate (global) and 12 sectors, assessing minimum dose to 90% of prostate (D90) and dose to 0.1 cm(3) of rectum (D0.1cc). Global and sector PID results were evaluated to investigate changes in D90 with case number. Urinary and bowel PROMs were assessed using the International Prostate Symptom Score and the Expanded Prostate Cancer Index Composite questionnaire. The correlation between global and individual sector PID and urinary/bowel PROMs was also evaluated.
RESULTS: Linear regression confirmed a significant improvement in global D90 with case number (r(2) = 0.20; p = 0.001) at a rate of 0.11 Gy/case. Postimplant D90 of base sectors increased at a rate of 0.11-0.15 Gy/case (p = 0.0001) and matched global improvement. The regression lines of midgland and apex sectors were significantly different from global D90 (p = 0.01). Posterior midgland sectors showed a significant reduction in D90 with case number at a rate of 0.13-0.19 Gy/case (p = 0.01). Dose to posterior midgland sectors correlated with rectal D0.1cc dose but not bowel PROMs. Dose to posterior midgland sectors correlated with urinary International Prostate Symptom Score change, which was not apparent when global D90 alone was considered.
CONCLUSIONS: Sector analysis provided increased spatial information regarding the PPB learning curve. Furthermore, sector analysis correlated with urinary PROMs and rectal dose.