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Forward Planning versus Inverse Planning:
- Forward planning entails establishing the plan parameters to get the required dose distribution while inverse planning entails using the required dose distribution to get the plan parameters.
- Inverse planning (e.g. IMRT) is naturally suited for software applications which either use iterative techniques or back-projection-like algorithms.
- Forward planning is how a human would produce a plan (i.e. manually manipulating plan parameters such as beam number, beam weighting, beam angles, beam modifiers, field size, etc.).