Methods: Pre-therapy and 2-week-post-therapy standard-of-care MPMRI were acquired from 5 focal cryotherapy patients. Two clinicians independently contoured, on each slice, the prostate (pre- and post-treatment) and the dominant index lesion CTV (pre-treatment) in the T2-weighted MRI, and the ablated region (post-treatment) in the dynamic-contrast- enhanced MRI. For each combination of clinician contours, post-treatment images were registered to pre-treatment images using a 3D biomechanical-model-based registration of prostate surfaces, and four metrics were computed: the proportion of the target tissue region that was ablated and the target:ablated region volume ratio for each of two targets (the CTV and an expanded planning target volume). Variance components analysis was used to measure the contribution of each type of contour to the variance in the therapy evaluation metrics.
Conclusions: 14–23% of evaluation metric variance was attributable to contouring variability (including 6–12% from ablation region contouring); reducing this variability could improve the precision of focal therapy evaluation metrics.