Mao W, Kim J, and Chetty IJ. Association Between Internal Organ/Liver Tumor and External Surface Motion From Cine MR Images on an MRI-Linac. Front Oncol 2022; 12:868076.
PURPOSES/OBJECTIVES: Historically, motion correlation between internal tumor and external surrogates have been based on limited sets of X-ray or magnetic resonance (MR) images. With the recent clinical implementation of MR-guided linear accelerators, a vast quantity of continuous planar real-time MR imaging data is acquired. In this study, information was extracted from MR cine imaging during liver cancer treatments to establish associations between internal tumor/diaphragm and external surface/skin movement.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: This retrospective study used 305,644 MR image frames acquired over 118 treatment/imaging sessions of the first 23 liver cancer patients treated on an MRI-linac. 9 features were automatically determined on each MR image frame: Lung_Area, the posterior (Dia_Post), dome (Dia_Dome), and anterior (Dia_Ant) points of a diaphragmatic curve and the diaphragm curve point (Dia_Max), the chest (Chest) and the belly (Belly) skin points experiencing the maximum motion ranges; the superior-interior (SI) and posterior-anterior (PA) positions of a target. For every session, correlation analyses were performed twice among the 9 features: 1) over a breath-hold (BH) set and 2) on a pseudo free-breathing (PFB) generated by removing breath-holding frames.
RESULTS: 303,123 frames of images were successfully analyzed. For BH set analysis, correlation coefficients were as follows: 0.94 ± 0.07 between any two features among Dia_Post, Dia_Dome, Dia_Max, and Lung_Area; 0.95 ± 0.06 between SI and any feature among Dia_Post, Dia_Dome, Dia_Max, or Lung_Area; 0.76 ± 0.29 between SI and Belly (with 50% of correlations ≥ 0.87). The PFB set had 142,862 frames of images. For this set, correlation coefficients were 0.96 ± 0.06 between any two features among Dia_Post, Dia_Dome, Dia_Max, and Lung_Area; 0.95 ± 0.06 between SI and any feature among Dia_Post, Dia_Dome, Dia_Max, or Lung_Area; 0.80 ± 0.26 between SI and Belly (with 50% of correlations ≥ 0.91).
CONCLUSION: Diaphragmatic motion as assessed by cine MR imaging is highly correlated with liver tumor motion. Belly vertical motion is highly correlated with liver tumor longitudinal motion in approximately half of the cases. More detailed analyses of those cases displaying weak correlations are in progress.