Liver focus and ARO’s inaugural print issue

By John H. Suh, MD, Editor-in-Chief

Welcome to the March 2015 issue of ARO! This month marks the exciting debut of the journal in print—in addition to running online—as requested by many ARO supporters. Offering each format delivers the best of both worlds: Among the benefits, print media is tangible, easy to use, and familiar. E-journals are readily accessible, easily searchable, simple to share (copy, paste, send), and provide a gateway to more information via links and search engines a click away.

Whatever your reading preference, you’ll find an insightful two-part liver cancer focus featured this month. “Liver cancer turf wars” by Eli Sapir, MD, et al., University of Michigan, explores how treatment options for patients with localized HCC who are not candidates for surgery often vary based on institutional expertise. These differences can prompt liver cancer turf wars between experts—even in facilities with multidisciplinary panels. This review better defines the roles for surgery, radiation oncology and interventional radiology.

Second, “Predicting close local failure after liver resection for hepatocellular carcinoma” by Elisha T. Fredman, MD, et al., from Case Western Reserve University, discusses how advances in three-dimensional radiation planning, IGRT, and high-dose radiation therapy have demonstrated the effectiveness of radiation treatment as an adjuvant therapy in preventing intrahepatic HCC recurrence. To help select ideal patients for additional radiotherapy, the authors conducted a systematic radiological analysis of intrahepatic recurrence patterns to better understand where a failure will develop relative to the original surgical bed.

Also featured is “Proton therapy for pituitary adenoma,” a retrospective review of patients treated at the University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute. The review describes how the high conformality of proton therapy does not appear to compromise local control or increase early toxicity. The authors provide additional information about the use of protons for pituitary adenomas.

As in every issue, we are pleased to showcase the winning case report from our quarterly Clinical Case Contest. “Radiation-induced pathologic complete response of gross nodal disease in recurrent head and neck melanoma,” by Zachary D. Lopater, MD, MPH, et al., University of Minnesota Hospital, details how hypofractionated radiation therapy induced a pathological complete response in recurrent gross nodal disease.

A close runner-up is “Radiation therapy following a positive sentinel lymph node biopsy: A radiation oncologist’s dilemma,” by Zaker Rana, BS, et al., University of Maryland. This case examines why radiation oncologists and surgeons must be cautious when applying the findings of the ACOSOG Z0011 trial to patients with a positive sentinel lymph node biopsy and poor prognostic factors.

Case reports are an excellent opportunity to share your thoughts on management of a controversial or uncommon situation and allow you to bolster your CV. Please consider submitting your case here, and you may be the next ARO winner—online and in print.

As always, we welcome your thoughts on how to improve ARO. Please enjoy the inaugural print issue!