Background and purpose Regarding latest developments, the need of a radiotherapy ‘Patterns of Care’ survey was expressed by the Dutch National Platform Radiotherapy for Gynaecological Cancer (LPRGT). Therefore, this study investigated current practice for cervical cancer in all 16 radiation oncology centres in the Netherlands specialised in gynaecological oncology. Material and methods A structured ‘patterns of care’ questionnaire was completed and followed by an in-depth interview with radiation oncologists from all radiotherapy centres specialised in gynaecological oncology. Specific topics addressed were: definition of target volumes, treatment preparation, imaging for treatment planning, treatment planning, and image-guided adaptive radiotherapy for external beam radiotherapy and brachytherapy. Results Current radiotherapy practice in the Netherlands for cervical cancer appears to be in accordance with international standards. However, at the time of the survey some differences were revealed that might have relevant clinical impact. For instance: 1) Half of the centres acquired positron emission tomography combined with CT (PET-CT) for staging and target delineation for every patient, 2) The definition of upper border of the para-aortal lymph node area and dose prescription for external beam radiotherapy varied between the centres, and 3) 12 centres used a single treatment plan for delivering EBRT, and four used a plan-of-the-day strategy with a library of 3–4 treatment plans. Conclusions Most differences were found at the cutting edge of clinical evidence. However, the majority of these uncertainties are topics being addressed in current and planned (inter)national studies.
de Boer, P., Jürgenliemk-Schulz, I. M., Westerveld, H., de Leeuw, A. A. C., Dávila-Fajardo, R., Rasch, C. R. N., ... Stalpers, L. J. A. (2017). Patterns of care survey: Radiotherapy for women with locally advanced cervical cancer. Radiotherapy and Oncology, 123(2), 306-311. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.radonc.2017.04.005