BACKGROUND: Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) has become the standard of care for medically inoperable patients with peripherally located, early stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and for those refusing surgical resection. Despite the availability of national and international guidelines, there exists substantial variability in many aspects of SBRT practice.
METHODS: The ESTRO ACROP guideline is based on a questionnaire covering all aspects of SBRT implementation and practice (n=114 items). The questionnaire was answered by the 11 faculty members of the ESTRO course "Clinical practice and implementation of image-guided SBRT" and their 8 institutions.
RESULTS: Agreement by >50% of the institutions was achieved in 72% of all items. Only 8/57 technologies and techniques were identified as mandatory for SBRT while 32/57 were considered as optional. In contrast, quality-assurance related elements were considered as mandatory in 12/24 items. A consensus of risk-adapted SBRT fractionation was achieved with 3×15Gy for peripherally located lesions and 4×12Gy (PTV D95-D99; Dmax <125% to <150%) for lesions with broad chest wall contact. For patients free from severe comorbidities and with favourable long-term OS expectancy, use of the maximum tolerated dose of 3×18Gy should be considered.
CONCLUSIONS: This ACROP guideline achieved detailed recommendations in all aspects of SBRT implementation and practice, which will contribute to further standardization of SBRT for peripherally located early stage NSCLC.