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Response of lithium formate EPR dosimeters at photon energies relevant to the dosimetry of brachytherapy
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiation Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiation Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences. Östergötlands Läns Landsting, Centre of Surgery and Oncology, Department of Radiation Physics.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0209-498X
Swedish Radiation Safety Authority, Stockholm, Sweden .
Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiation Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
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2010 (English)In: Medical physics (Lancaster), ISSN 0094-2405, Vol. 37, no 9, 4946-4959 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]


To investigate experimentally the energy dependence of the detector response of lithium formate EPR dosimeters for photon energies below 1 MeV relative to that at 60Co energies. High energy photon beams are used in calibrating dosimeters for use in brachytherapy since the absorbed dose to water can be determined with high accuracy in such beams using calibrated ion chambers and standard dosimetry protocols. In addition to any differences in mass-energy absorption properties between water and detector, variations in radiation yield (detector response) with radiation quality, caused by differences in the density of ionization in the energy imparted (LET), may exist. Knowledge of an eventual deviation in detector response with photon energy is important for attaining high accuracy in measured brachytherapy dose distributions.


Lithium formate EPR dosimeters were irradiated to known levels of air kerma in 25-250 kV x-ray beams and in 137Cs and 60Co beams at the Swedish Secondary Standards Dosimetry Laboratory. Conversions from air kerma free in air into values of mean absorbed dose to the detectors were made using EGSnrc MC simulations and x-ray energy spectra measured or calculated for the actual beams. The signals from the detectors were measured using EPR spectrometry. Detector response (the EPR signal per mean absorbed dose to the detector) relative to that for 60Co was determined for each beam quality.


Significant decreases in the relative response ranging from 5% to 6% were seen for x-ray beams at tube voltages < or = 180 kV. No significant reduction in the relative response was seen for 137Cs and 250 kV x rays.


When calibrated in 60Co or MV photon beams, corrections for the photon energy dependence of detector response are needed to achieve the highest accuracy when using lithium formate EPR dosimeters for measuring absorbed doses around brachytherapy sources emitting photons in the energy range of 20-150 keV such as 169Yb and electronic sources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
American Association of Physicists in Medicine , 2010. Vol. 37, no 9, 4946-4959 p.
Keyword [en]
lithium formate EPR, brachytherapy, dosimetry, detector response, kV x rays
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-59955DOI: 10.1118/1.3475938ISI: 000281906000046PubMedID: 20964214OAI: diva2:354353
Available from: 2010-10-01 Created: 2010-10-01 Last updated: 2015-03-20Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Lithium formate EPR dosimetry for accurate measurements of absorbed dose in radiotherapy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Lithium formate EPR dosimetry for accurate measurements of absorbed dose in radiotherapy
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Lithium formate has shown to be a material with properties suitable for electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) dosimetry, among them up to 7 times higher sensitivity compared to alanine, which is a well-established EPR detector material for dose determinations in radiotherapy.

The aim of this thesis was to further investigate the properties of lithium formate and develop the dosimetry system towards applications in radiotherapy. The intrinsic efficiency for energies of relevance to brachytherapy and the signal stability were investigated. The dosimetry system was expanded to include a smaller dosimeter model, suitable for measurements in dose gradient regions. An individual sensitivity correction method was applied to the smaller dosimeters to be able to perform dose determinations with the same precision as for the larger ones. EPR dosimetry in general is time consuming and effort was spent to optimize the signal readout procedure regarding measurement time and measurement precision.

The system was applied in two clinical applications chosen for their high demands on the dosimetry system: 1) a dosimetry audit for external photon beam therapy and 2) dose verification measurements around a low energy HDR brachytherapy source.

The conclusions drawn from this thesis were: dose determinations can be performed with a standard uncertainty of 1.8-2.5% using both the original size dosimeters and the new developed smaller ones. The dosimetry system is robust and useful for applications when high measurement precision and accuracy is prioritized. It is a good candidate for dosimetry audits, both in external beam therapy and brachytherapy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2014. 51 p.
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 1417
National Category
Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-111091 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-111091 (DOI)978-91-7519-246-8 (print) (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-11-06, Eken, ingång 65, plan 9, Campus US, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2014-10-07 Created: 2014-10-07 Last updated: 2015-03-20Bibliographically approved

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Adolfsson, EmelieAlm Carlsson, GudrunGustafsson, HåkanLund, EvaCarlsson Tedgren, Åsa
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