The Leksell Gamma Knife Icon (GK Icon) radiosurgery system can utilize cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) to evaluate motion error. This study compares the accuracy of frame-based and frameless mask-based fixation using the Icon system.
A retrospective cohort study was conducted to evaluate patients who had undergone radiosurgery with the GK Icon system between June and December 2017. Patients were immobilized in either a stereotactic head frame or a noninvasive thermoplastic mask with stereotactic infrared (IR) camera monitoring. Setup error was defined as displacement of the skull in the stereotactic space upon setup as noted on pretreatment CBCT compared to its position in the stereotactic space defined by planning MRI for frame patients and defined as skull displacement on planning CBCT compared to its position on pretreatment CBCT for mask patients. For frame patients, the intrafractionation motion was measured by comparing pretreatment and posttreatment CBCT. For mask patients, the intrafractionation motion was evaluated by comparing pretreatment CBCT and additional CBCT obtained during the treatment. The translational and rotational errors were recorded.
Data were collected from 77 patients undergoing SRS with the GK Icon. Sixty-four patients underwent frame fixation, with pre- and posttreatment CBCT studies obtained. Thirteen patients were treated using mask fixation to deliver a total of 33 treatment fractions. Mean setup and intrafraction translational and rotation errors were small for both fixation systems, within 1 mm and 1° in all axes. Yet mask fixation demonstrated significantly larger intrafraction errors than frame fixation. Also, there was greater variability in both setup and intrafraction errors for mask fixation than for frame fixation in all translational and rotational directions. Whether the GK treatment was for metastasis or nonmetastasis did not influence motion uncertainties between the two fixation types. Additionally, monitoring IR-based intrafraction motion for mask fixation—i.e., the number of treatment stoppages due to reaching the IR displacement threshold—correlated with increasing treatment time.
Compared to frame-based fixation, mask-based fixation demonstrated larger motion variations. The variability in motion error associated with mask fixation must be taken into account when planning for small lesions or lesions near critical structures.