Automatic treatment planning for VMAT-based total body irradiation using Eclipse scripting

Jose R. Teruel, Sameer Taneja, Paulina E. Galavis, K. Sunshine Osterman, Allison McCarthy, Martha Malin, Naamit K. Gerber, Christine Hitchen, David L. Barbee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this work is to establish an automated approach for a multiple isocenter volumetric arc therapy (VMAT)-based TBI treatment planning approach. Five anonymized full-body CT imaging sets were used. A script was developed to automate and standardize the treatment planning process using the Varian Eclipse v15.6 Scripting API. The script generates two treatment plans: a head-first VMAT-based plan for upper body coverage using four isocenters and a total of eight full arcs; and a feet-first AP/PA plan with three isocenters that covers the lower extremities of the patient. PTV was the entire body cropped 5 mm from the patient surface and extended 3 mm into the lungs and kidneys. Two plans were generated for each case: one to a total dose of 1200 cGy in 8 fractions and a second one to a total dose of 1320 cGy in 8 fractions. Plans were calculated using the AAA algorithm and 6 MV photon energy. One plan was created and delivered to an anthropomorphic phantom containing 12 OSLDs for in-vivo dose verification. For the plans prescribed to 1200 cGy total dose the following dosimetric results were achieved: median PTV V100% = 94.5%; median PTV D98% = 89.9%; median lungs Dmean = 763 cGy; median left kidney Dmean = 1058 cGy; and median right kidney Dmean = 1051 cGy. For the plans prescribed to 1320 cGy total dose the following dosimetric results were achieved: median PTV V100% = 95.0%; median PTV D98% = 88.7%; median lungs Dmean = 798 cGy; median left kidney Dmean = 1059 cGy; and median right kidney Dmean = 1064 cGy. Maximum dose objective was met for all cases. The dose deviation between the treatment planning dose and the dose measured by the OSLDs was within ±4%. In summary, we have demonstrated that scripting can produce high-quality plans based on predefined dose objectives and can decrease planning time by automatic target and optimization contours generation, plan creation, field and isocenter placement, and optimization objectives setup.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-130
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2021


  • advanced treatment planning
  • eclipse scripting
  • plan automation
  • special procedures
  • total body irradiation (TBI)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Instrumentation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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