DOI: 10.1002/acm2.14229 ISSN: 1526-9914

Dose‐rate dependence and IMRT QA suitability of EBT3 radiochromic films for pulse reduced dose‐rate radiotherapy (PRDR) dosimetry

Ahtesham Ullah Khan, Jeff Radtke, Clifford Hammer, Julia Malyshev, Brett Morris, Carri Glide‐Hurst, Larry DeWerd, Wesley Culberson, Adam Bayliss
  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Instrumentation
  • Radiation



Pulsed reduced dose rate (PRDR) is an emerging radiotherapy technique for recurrent diseases. It is pertinent that the linac beam characteristics are evaluated for PRDR dose rates and a suitable dosimeter is employed for IMRT QA.


This study sought to investigate the pulse characteristics of a 6 MV photon beam during PRDR irradiations on a commercial linac. The feasibility of using EBT3 radiochromic film for use in IMRT QA was also investigated by comparing its response to a commercial diode array phantom.


A plastic scintillator detector was employed to measure the photon pulse characteristics across nominal repetition rates (NRRs) in the 5–600 MU/min range. Film was irradiated with dose rates in the 0.033–4 Gy/min range to study the dose rate dependence. Five clinical PRDR treatment plans were selected for IMRT QA with the Delta4 phantom and EBT3 film sheets. The planned and measured dose were compared using gamma analysis with a criterion of 3%/3 mm. EBT3 film QA was performed using a cumulative technique and a weighting factor technique.


Negligible differences were observed in the pulse width and height data between the investigated NRRs. The pulse width was measured to be 3.15 ± 0.01 and the PRF was calculated to be 3–357 Hz for the 5–600 MU/min NRRs. The EBT3 film was found to be dose rate independent within 3%. The gamma pass rates (GPRs) were above 99% and 90% for the Delta4 phantom and the EBT3 film using the cumulative QA method, respectively. GPRs as low as 80% were noted for the weighting factor EBT3 QA method.


Altering the NRRs changes the mean dose rate while the instantaneous dose rate remains constant. The EBT3 film was found to be suitable for PRDR dosimetry and IMRT QA with minimal dose rate dependence.

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