Purpose The use of computed tomography (CT) for routine surveillance to detect recurrence in patients with Wilms tumor (WT) has increased in recent years. The utility of CT, despite increased risk and cost, to improve outcome for these patients is unknown. We conducted a retrospective analysis with patients enrolled in the fifth National Wilms Tumor Study (NWTS-5) to determine if surveillance with CT correlates with improved overall survival (OS) after recurrence compared with chest x-ray (CXR) and abdominal ultrasound (US). Patients and Methods Overall, 281 patients with recurrent unilateral favorable-histology WT were reviewed to assess how WT recurrence was detected: sign/symptoms (SS), surveillance imaging (SI) with CT scan, or SI with CXR/US. Results The estimated 5-year OS rate after relapse was 67% (95% CI, 61% to 72%). Twenty-five percent of recurrences were detected with SS; 48.5%, with CXR/US; and 26.5%, with CT. Patients with SS had a 5-year OS rate of 59% (95% CI, 46% to 72%) compared with 70% (95% CI, 63% to 77%; P = .23) for those detected by SI. Recurrences detected by CT had a shorter median time from diagnosis to recurrence (0.60 years) compared with SS (0.91 years) or CXR/US (0.86 years; P = .003). For recurrences detected by SI, more tumor foci at relapse (P, .001) and size of the largest focus greater than 2 cm (P = .02) were associated with inferior OS. However, there was no difference in OS after relapse when recurrence was detected by CT versus CXR/US (5-year OS rate, 65% v 73%; P = .20). Conclusion In patients with favorable-histology WT, elimination of CT scans from surveillance programs is unlikely to compromise survival but would result in substantial reduction in radiation exposure and health care costs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research