Computed tomography-based anatomic assessment overestimates local tumor recurrence in patients with mass-like consolidation after stereotactic body radiotherapy for early-stage non-small cell lung cancer.

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PURPOSE: To investigate pulmonary radiologic changes after lung stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT), to distinguish between mass-like fibrosis and tumor recurrence.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Eighty consecutive patients treated with 3- to 5-fraction SBRT for early-stage peripheral non-small cell lung cancer with a minimum follow-up of 12 months were reviewed. The mean biologic equivalent dose received was 150 Gy (range, 78-180 Gy). Patients were followed with serial CT imaging every 3 months. The CT appearance of consolidation was defined as diffuse or mass-like. Progressive disease on CT was defined according to Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors 1.1. Positron emission tomography (PET) CT was used as an adjunct test. Tumor recurrence was defined as a standardized uptake value equal to or greater than the pretreatment value. Biopsy was used to further assess consolidation in select patients.

RESULTS: Median follow-up was 24 months (range, 12.0-36.0 months). Abnormal mass-like consolidation was identified in 44 patients (55%), whereas diffuse consolidation was identified in 12 patients (15%), at a median time from end of treatment of 10.3 months and 11.5 months, respectively. Tumor recurrence was found in 35 of 44 patients with mass-like consolidation using CT alone. Combined with PET, 10 of the 44 patients had tumor recurrence. Tumor size (hazard ratio 1.12, P=.05) and time to consolidation (hazard ratio 0.622, P=.03) were predictors for tumor recurrence. Three consecutive increases in volume and increasing volume at 12 months after treatment in mass-like consolidation were highly specific for tumor recurrence (100% and 80%, respectively). Patients with diffuse consolidation were more likely to develop grade ≥ 2 pneumonitis (odds ratio 26.5, P=.02) than those with mass-like consolidation (odds ratio 0.42, P=.07).

CONCLUSION: Incorporating the kinetics of mass-like consolidation and PET to the current criteria for evaluating posttreatment response will increase the likelihood of correctly identifying patients with progressive disease after lung SBRT.





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Diagnosis | Medicine and Health Sciences | Other Analytical, Diagnostic and Therapeutic Techniques and Equipment | Radiology




Department of Radiology and Diagnostic Medical Imaging

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