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This article has been peer reviewed. It was published in: Radiation Oncology.

Volume 10, Issue 1, September 17, 2015, Article number 196.

The published version is available at DOI: 10.1186/s13014-015-0503-8

Copyright © 2015 Kok et al.


Locoregional hyperthermia, i.e. increasing the tumor temperature to 40-45 °C using an external heating device, is a very effective radio and chemosensitizer, which significantly improves clinical outcome. There is a clear thermal dose-effect relation, but the pursued optimal thermal dose of 43 °C for 1 h can often not be realized due to treatment limiting hot spots in normal tissue. Modern heating devices have a large number of independent antennas, which provides flexible power steering to optimize tumor heating and minimize hot spots, but manual selection of optimal settings is difficult. Treatment planning is a very valuable tool to improve locoregional heating. This paper reviews the developments in treatment planning software for tissue segmentation, electromagnetic field calculations, thermal modeling and optimization techniques. Over the last decade, simulation tools have become more advanced. On-line use has become possible by implementing algorithms on the graphical processing unit, which allows real-time computations. The number of applications using treatment planning is increasing rapidly and moving on from retrospective analyses towards assisting prospective clinical treatment strategies. Some clinically relevant applications will be discussed.

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