J Appl Clin Med Phys
Substantial disagreement exists over appropriate PET segmentation techniques for non-small cell lung cancer. Currently, no segmentation algorithm explicitly considers tumor motion in determining tumor borders. We developed an automatic PET segmentation model as a function of target volume, motion extent, and source-to-background ratio (the VMSBR model). The purpose of this work was to apply the VMSBR model and six other segmentation algorithms to a sample of lung tumors. PET and 4D CT were performed in the same imaging session for 23 patients (24 tumors) for radiation therapy planning. Internal target volumes (ITVs) were autosegmented on maximum intensity projection (MIP) of cine CT. ITVs were delineated on PET using the following methods: 15%, 35%, and 42% of maximum activity concentration, standardized uptake value (SUV) of 2.5 g/mL, 15% of mean activity concentration plus background, a linear function of mean SUV, and the VMSBR model. Predicted threshold values from each method were compared to measured optimal threshold values, and resulting volume magnitudes were compared to cine-CT-derived ITV. Correlation between predicted and measured threshold values ranged from slopes of 0.29 for the simplest single-threshold techniques to 0.90 for the VMSBR technique. R-2 values ranged from 0.07 for the simplest single-threshold techniques to 0.86 for the VMSBR technique. The VMSBR segmentation technique that included volume, motion, and source-to-background ratio, produced accurate ITVs in patients when compared with cine-CT-derived ITV.
School of Medicine