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Volume 23, Number 1, 2018

Absorption ratio of treatment couch and effect on surface and build-up region doses

Taylan Tuğrul



In this study, at different fields, energies and gantry angles, treatment couch and rails dose absorption ratio and treatment couch effect on surface and build-up region doses were examined.


It is assumed that radiation attenuation is minimal because the carbon fiber couches have low density and it is not generally accounted for during treatment planning. Consequently, it leads to a major dosimetric mistake.

Materials and methods

Solid water phantom was used for relative dose measurement. The measurements were done using a Farmer ion chamber with 0.6 cc volume and a parallel plane ion chamber starting from surface with 1 mm depth intervals at 10 × 10 cm2 field, SSD 100 cm. Measurements were taken for situations where the beams intersect the couch and couch rails.


Dose absorption ratio of carbon fiber couch obtained at gantry angle of 180° was 1.52%, 0.69%, 0.33% and 0.25% at different field sizes for 6 MV. For 15 MV, this ratio was 0.95%, 0.27%, 0.20% and 0.05%. The absorption ratio is between 3.4% and 1.22% when the beams intersect with couch rails. The couch effect increased surface dose from 14% to 70% for 6 MV and from 11.34% to 53.03% for 15 MV.


The results showed that the carbon fiber couch increased surface dose during posterior irradiation. Therefore, the skin-sparing effect of the high energy beams was decreased. If the effect of couch is not considered, it may cause significant differences at dose which reaches the patient and may cause tissue problems such as erythema.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2018; 23(1) : 1-5

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