gms | German Medical Science

48th Meeting of the Particle Therapy Co-Operative Group

Particle Therapy Co-Operative Group (PTCOG)

28.09. - 03.10.2009, Heidelberg

The STAR Radiosurgery Program at Harvard and MGH – The Successful Optimization of Resources at Two Facilities

Meeting Abstract

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  • P. Chapman - Neurosurgery and Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston MA, USA

PTCOG 48. Meeting of the Particle Therapy Co-Operative Group. Heidelberg, 28.09.-03.10.2009. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2009. Doc09ptcog038

doi: 10.3205/09ptcog038, urn:nbn:de:0183-09ptcog0383

Veröffentlicht: 24. September 2009

© 2009 Chapman.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open Access-Artikel und steht unter den Creative Commons Lizenzbedingungen ( Er darf vervielfältigt, verbreitet und öffentlich zugänglich gemacht werden, vorausgesetzt dass Autor und Quelle genannt werden.



In 1991 the first radiosurgical treatment was carried out at the Harvard Cyclotron Laboratory (HCL) using the newly developed Stereotactic Alignment System for Radiosurgery (STAR). The system had been designed to meet the pressing need for a method of delivering proton radiosurgical treatments that incorporated important recent advances in medical technology and methodology, especially as related to three dimensional stereotactic localization and treatment planning based on CT and MRI imaging. Physical constraints imposed by the 41-year-old HCL facility required a variety of innovative design solutions. These difficulties included space limitations and utilization of an existing fixed horizontal beam. The STAR patient positioning device, which is based on the principle of isocentric stereotaxis, was successfully used at HCL for over ten years until that facility was closed and all proton treatments were moved to the newly opened Northeast Proton Therapy Center at MGH. Initially radiosurgery treatments were performed using a gantry that was modified for radiosurgery. It was clear however that the heavy patient load and some unique needs related to radiosurgery would require installation of the STAR system at the new facility as well. Accordingly this was carried out using an existing horizontal beam line. The process of installation allowed us to incorporate improvements in the STAR system to optimize its continuing use for radiosurgery. In addition it has proved to be invaluable for fractionated proton beam radiotherapy of cranial and skull base tumors.