Technical note: Evaluation of methods for reducing edge current density under electrode arrays for tumor-treating fields therapy

Heehun Sung, Yunhui Jo, Geon Oh, Yongha Gi, Hyunwoo Kim, Sangmin Park, Jaehyeon Seo, Myonggeun Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Tumor-treating fields (TTFields) therapy is increasingly utilized clinically because of its demonstrated efficacy in cancer treatment. However, the risk of skin burns must still be reduced to improve patient safety and posttreatment quality of life. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the methods of constructing electrode arrays that reduce current density exceeding threshold values, which can cause skin burns during TTFields therapy. Methods: Electrode and body models were generated using COMSOL software. The body model had the dielectric properties of the scalp. The average current density beneath the central region of the electrode was maintained at ∼31 mA/cm2 RMS. The deviations in current density at the edges of the electrode were reduced by three methods: adjustment of the ceramic thickness ratio of the center to the edge from 1/5 to 4/5, adjustment of the radius of the metal plate from 5.0 to 8.0 mm, and insertion of an insulator of width 0.5 to 2 mm at the edge. Results: While using a single circular electrode, adjustment of the ceramic thickness ratio, adjustment of the metal plate radius, and insertion of an insulator near the edge reduced the deviations of current density by 14.6%, 67.7%, and 75.3%, respectively. Similarly, while using circular electrode arrays, inserting an insulator at the edge of each electrode reduced the deviations of current density significantly, from 8.62 to 2.40 mA/cm2. Conclusions: Insertion of an insulator at the edge of each electrode was found to be the most effective method of attaining uniform current density distribution beneath the electrode, thereby lowering the risk of adverse effects of TTFields therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4837-4844
Number of pages8
JournalMedical physics
Volume49
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jul

Keywords

  • current density
  • edge current
  • electrode arrays
  • tumor-treating fields

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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