Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate significant clinical, tumour-related and dosimetric factors among patients with grade 0-1, grade 2 and grade 3 radiation pneumonitis (RP) after stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) for lung tumours. Methods: Patients (n=128) with a total of 133 lung tumours treated with SBRT of 50 Gy in 5 fractions were analysed. RP was graded according to the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events v.3.0. Significant factors were identified by univariate and multivariate analyses. Threshold dose-volume histograms (DVHs) were constructed to identify the incidence of RP. Results: The median follow-up period was 12 months (range, 6-45 months). In univariate analyses, gender, operability, forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1), internal target volume, lung volumes treated with doses >5-30 Gy (V5-30) and mean lung dose were significant factors differentiating between grade 0-1 and grade 2 RP, and V15-30 were significant factors differentiating between grade 2 and grade 3. However, no factors were significant between grade 0-1 and grade 3 RP. Multivariate analysis showed that female gender, high FEV1 and high V15 were significant factors differentiating between grade 0-1 and grade 2 RP. Threshold DVH curves were created based on ≤5% and ≤15% risk of grade 2 RP among patients with grade 0-2 RP. Conclusions: Grade 0-2 RP was dose-volume dependent, and female gender and high FEV1 were significant predictive clinical factors for grade 2 RP among patients with grade 0-2 RP. However, incidences of V15-30 in grade 3 RP were significantly lower than those in grade 2 RP, and no significant clinical or tumour-related factors were found. Further studies are needed to identify the mechanism underlying the development of grade 3 RP after SBRT for lung tumours.
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