The Interdisciplinary Tumor Board (ITB) of the Cooperative Ewing Sarcoma Study (CESS) Group was investigated to assess its impact on the overall survival (OAS) of Ewing sarcoma (EwS) patients. The ITB functions as a reference center for the international institutions participating in the clinical trials of the CESS group, but is also available internationally to patients who have not been treated within an appropriate clinical trial. The value of tumor boards in terms of benefit for the patients and the health care system in general is not well documented and is also the subject of controversial discussions. A review of the representative literature is included.Methods:
Data were analyzed from 481 patients who had been registered into the European Ewing Tumor Working Initiative of National Groups (EURO E.W.I.N.G.-99) clinical trial via the CESS data center between 2006 and 2009; this included 331 patients with localized disease and another 150 individuals with metastases at diagnosis. Median follow-up time was 3.2 years.Results:
Improved OAS was observed for patients with metastases who had received recommendations from the ITB compared with those who had not received recommendations. In patients with localized disease, a recommendation from the ITB had no influence on OAS.Conclusion:
As a reference center for a rare disease, recommendations from our ITB impacted local therapy and led to higher OAS in patients with metastatic disease. To our knowledge, this is the first analysis that examines the value of a reference tumor board on a rare disease.