MRI-based long-term follow-up of indolent orbital lymphomas after curative radiotherapy : imaging remission criteria and volumetric regression kinetics

We systematically analyzed the kinetics of tumor regression, the impact of residual lesions on disease control and the applicability of the Lugano classification in follow-up MRI of orbital non-Hodgkin lymphomas that were irradiated with photons. We retrospectively analyzed a total of 154 pre- and post-irradiation MRI datasets of 36 patients with low-grade, Ann-Arbor stage I, orbital non-Hodgkin lymphomas. Patients with restricted conjunctival involvement were excluded. Lymphoma lesions were delineated and volumetrically analyzed on T1-weighted sequences. Tumor residues were present in 91.2% of all cases during the first six months after treatment. Volumetric partial response rates (> 50% volume reduction) were 75%, 69.2%, and 50% at 12–24 months, 36–48 months and > 48 months after the end of treatment. The corresponding complete response (CR) rates according to the Lugano classification were 20%, 23.1% and 50%. During a median clinical follow-up of 37 months no significant differences in progression free survival (PFS) rates were observed between the CR and non-CR group (p = 0.915). A residual tumor volume below 20% of the pretreatment volume should be expected at long-term follow-up beyond one year after radiotherapy.


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