Factors Associated with Cardiac Radiation Dose Reduction Following Hypofractionated Radiation Therapy for Localized, Left-Sided Breast Cancer in a Large Statewide Quality Consortium

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys


Purpose/Objective(s): Limiting radiation dose to the heart is important for minimizing the risk of long-term cardiac toxicity in patients with left-sided early-stage breast cancer. Materials/Methods: Prospectively collected dosimetric data were analyzed for patients undergoing hypofractionated radiation therapy to the left breast for localized node-negative breast cancer within the Michigan Radiation Oncology Quality Consortium (MROQC) from 2016-2022. Goals for limiting cardiac dose were adjusted over time. From 2016-2020, the cardiac quality metric focused on total mean heart dose (MHD) from the composite whole breast and boost plans, tightening from a goal of MHD ≤2 Gy to MHD ≤1.2 Gy by 2020. In 2021-2022, the cardiac metric transitioned to a combined goal of MHD ≤1.0 Gy from the whole breast plan and ≥95% lumpectomy cavity planning target volume (PTV) receiving 95% of the prescription dose. Separate multivariate logistic regression models were developed to assess for covariates associated with meeting the MHD goal in 2016-2020 and combined MHD/PTV coverage goal in 2021-2022. Results: In total, 4,165 patients were analyzed with a median age of 64 years. Most patients (86%) had either Tis or T1 disease, and 66% received hormone therapy. Baseline demographic and disease characteristics did not change substantially between treatment periods. Use of breath-hold or motion gating increased from 42% in 2016-2020 to 46% in 2021-2022. Similarly, use of prone positioning increased from 12% to 20%. From 2016-2020, 90.9% of plans achieved the MHD goal, compared to 93.6% of plans achieving the composite MHD/PTV goal from 2021-2022. On multivariate analysis in the 2016-2020 cohort, treatment with motion management (OR 5.20, 95% CI [3.59-7.54], p<0.0001) or prone positioning (OR 3.21, 95% CI [1.85-5.57], p < 0.0001) were associated with meeting the MHD goal, while receipt of boost (OR 0.25, 95% CI [0.17-0.39], p<0.0001) and omission of hormone therapy (OR 0.65, 95% CI [0.49-0.88], p = 0.0047), were associated with not meeting the MHD goal. During the era including composite heart dose and PTV coverage goals (2021-2022), treatment with motion management (OR 1.89, 95% CI [1.12-3.21], p = 0.018) or prone positioning (OR 3.71, 95% CI [1.73-7.95], p = 0.0008) were associated with meeting the combined goal, while larger breast volume (≥1440 cc, OR 0.34, 95% CI [0.13 – 0.91], p = 0.031) and treatment at an academic center (OR 0.36, 95% CI [0.22-0.67], p = 0.0009) were associated with not meeting the combined goal. Conclusion: In our statewide consortium, rates of compliance with aggressive targets for limiting cardiac dose remain high, despite tightening of these goals to include lower mean heart doses and inclusion of a concurrent PTV coverage goal. Treatment using motion management or prone positioning is associated with achieving the cardiac dose goals.





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