Retroperitoneal sarcoma (RPS) high risk gross tumor volume boost (HR GTV boost) contour delineation agreement among NRG sarcoma radiation and surgical oncologists

Ann Surg Oncol. 2015 Sep;22(9):2846-52. doi: 10.1245/s10434-015-4633-x. Epub 2015 May 28.


Purpose: Curative intent management of retroperitoneal sarcoma (RPS) requires gross total resection. Preoperative radiotherapy (RT) often is used as an adjuvant to surgery, but recurrence rates remain high. To enhance RT efficacy with acceptable tolerance, there is interest in delivering "boost doses" of RT to high-risk areas of gross tumor volume (HR GTV) judged to be at risk for positive resection margins. We sought to evaluate variability in HR GTV boost target volume delineation among collaborating sarcoma radiation and surgical oncologist teams.

Methods: Radiation planning CT scans for three cases of RPS were distributed to seven paired radiation and surgical oncologist teams at six institutions. Teams contoured HR GTV boost volumes for each case. Analysis of contour agreement was performed using the simultaneous truth and performance level estimation (STAPLE) algorithm and kappa statistics.

Results: HRGTV boost volume contour agreement between the seven teams was "substantial" or "moderate" for all cases. Agreement was best on the torso wall posteriorly (abutting posterior chest abdominal wall) and medially (abutting ipsilateral para-vertebral space and great vessels). Contours varied more significantly abutting visceral organs due to differing surgical opinions regarding planned partial organ resection.

Conclusions: Agreement of RPS HRGTV boost volumes between sarcoma radiation and surgical oncologist teams was substantial to moderate. Differences were most striking in regions abutting visceral organs, highlighting the importance of collaboration between the radiation and surgical oncologist for "individualized" target delineation on the basis of areas deemed at risk and planned resection.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Consensus
  • Humans
  • Observer Variation
  • Organs at Risk*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Prognosis
  • Radiation Oncology*
  • Radiotherapy Planning, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Retroperitoneal Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Retroperitoneal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Retroperitoneal Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Risk Factors
  • Sarcoma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Sarcoma / pathology
  • Sarcoma / radiotherapy
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods
  • Tumor Burden*