An open-source tool to visualize potential cone collisions while planning SRS cases

Anna Laura Licon, Ara Alexandrian, Daniel Saenz, Pamela Myers, Karl Rasmussen, Sotirios Stathakis, Niko Papanikolaou, Neil Kirby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: To create an open-source visualization program that allows one to find potential cone collisions while planning intracranial stereotactic radiosurgery cases. Methods: Measurements of physical components in the treatment room (gantry, cone, table, localization stereotactic radiation surgery frame, etc.) were incorporated into a script in MATLAB (MathWorks, Natick, MA) that produces three-dimensional visualizations of the components. A localization frame, used during simulation, fully contains the patient. This frame was used to represent a safety zone for collisions. Simple geometric objects are used to approximate the simulated components. The couch is represented as boxes, the gantry head and cone are represented by cylinders, and the patient safety zone can be represented by either a box or ellipsoid. These objects are translated and rotated based upon the beam geometry and the treatment isocenter to mimic treatment. A simple graphical user interface (GUI) was made in MATLAB (compatible with GNU Octave) to allow users to pass the treatment isocenter location, the initial and terminal gantry angles, the couch angle, and the number of angular points to visualize between the initial and terminal gantry angle. Results: The GUI provides a fast and simple way to discover collisions in the treatment room before the treatment plan is completed. Twenty patient arcs were used as an end-to-end validation of the system. Seventeen of these appeared the same in the software as in the room. Three of the arcs appeared closer in the software than in the room. This is due to the treatment couch having rounded corners, whereas the software visualizes sharp corners. Conclusions: This simple GUI can be used to find the best orientation of beams for each patient. By finding collisions before a plan is being simulated in the treatment room, a user can save time due to replanning of cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)40-47
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2020


  • code
  • cone collision
  • open source
  • stereotactic radiosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Radiation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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