Local control for intermediate-risk rhabdomyosarcoma: Results from D9803 according to histology, group, site, and size: A report from the children's oncology group

Suzanne L. Wolden, Elizabeth R. Lyden, Carola A. Arndt, Douglas S. Hawkins, James R. Anderson, David A. Rodeberg, Carol D. Morris, Sarah S. Donaldson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Purpose To determine local control according to clinical variables for patients with intermediate-risk rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) treated on Children's Oncology Group protocol D9803. Patients and Methods Of 702 patients enrolled, we analyzed 423 patients with central pathology-confirmed group III embryonal (n=280) or alveolar (group III, n=102; group I-II, n=41) RMS. Median age was 5 years. Patients received 42 weeks of VAC (vincristine, dactinomycin, cyclophosphamide) or VAC alternating with VTC (T = topotecan). Local therapy with 50.4 Gy radiation therapy with or without delayed primary excision began at week 12 for group III patients. Patients with group I/II alveolar RMS received 36-41.4 Gy. Local failure (LF) was defined as local progression as a first event with or without concurrent regional or distant failure. Results At a median follow-up of 6.6 years, patients with clinical group I/II alveolar RMS had a 5-year event-free survival rate of 69% and LF of 10%. Among patients with group III RMS, 5-year event-free survival and LF rates were 70% and 19%, respectively. Local failure rates did not differ by histology, nodal status, or primary site, though there was a trend for increased LF for retroperitoneal (RP) tumors (P=.12). Tumors ≥5 cm were more likely to fail locally than tumors <5 cm (25% vs 10%, P=.0004). Almost all (98%) RP tumors were ≥5 cm, with no difference in LF by site when the analysis was restricted to tumors ≥5 cm (P=.86). Conclusion Local control was excellent for clinical group I/II alveolar RMS. Local failure constituted 63% of initial events in clinical group III patients and did not vary by histology or nodal status. The trend for higher LF in RP tumors was related to tumor size. There has been no clear change in local control over RMS studies, including IRS-III and IRS-IV. Novel approaches are warranted for larger tumors (≥5 cm).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1071-1076
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research

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