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This study describes a subset of the  HNSCC  collection on TCIA. 


Cross sectional imaging is essential for the patient-specific planning and delivery of radiotherapy, a primary determinant of head and neck cancer outcomes. Publicly shared RT data is scarce due to high complexity of RT structure data and the need for registration in time, space, and across planning sets. We here introduce an open access imaging database for patients treated with radiotherapy for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).


2840 consecutive patients with HNSCC treated with curative-intent RT at MD Anderson Cancer Center from 2003 to 2013 were screened. Patients with whole-body PET-CT or abdominal CT scans both before and after RT were included (n=215). Clinical data were retrieved from the MD Anderson Cancer Center custom electronic medical record system, ClinicStation. Using cross sectional imaging, we calculated total body skeletal muscle and adipose content before and after treatment. All files were de-identified and transferred to The Cancer Imaging Archive servers using the RSNA Clinical Trial Processor program. Files were screened for errors or residual PHI using TagSniffer and Posda Tools software, reviewed by TCIA curators, then confirmed at the parent institution.


The HNSCC collection is a dataset consisting of 433,384 DICOM files from 3,225 series and 765 studies collected from 215 patients, which includes de-identified diagnostic imaging, radiation treatment planning, and follow up imaging. All imaging data are subject- and date-matched to clinical data from each patient, including demographics, risk factors, grade, stage, recurrence, and survival.


Recent advances in data archiving, patient de-identification, and image registration have allowed for the creation of a high quality RT-enriched imaging database within TCIA. Open access to these data allows for interinstitutional comparisons of complete RT details in non-randomized patient populations, allowing for a more granular understanding of three dimensional factors that influence treatment effectiveness and toxicity sparing.

A related dataset describing the other component of the  the  HNSCC  collection is here: Radiomics outcome prediction in Oropharyngeal cancer DOI: 10.7937/TCIA.2020.2vx6-fy46

Localtab Group

titleData Access

Data Access

Data TypeDownload all or Query/FilterLicense
Images and Radiation Therapy Structures (DICOM)

Download requires NBIA Data Retriever

Tcia restricted license

Clinical (XLS)

Tcia cc by 3

Data Dictionary (XLS)

Tcia cc by 3

Please contact  with any questions regarding usage.

Collections Used in this Third Party Analysis

Below is a list of the Collections used in these analyses:

titleDetailed Description

Detailed Description

Radiological Image statistics



Number of Patients


Number of Studies


Number of Series


Number of Images

Images Size (GB)93

Note from the investigators: Some PET scans will include two PET AC files—one includes the head & neck portion of the exam, the other includes eyes-to-thighs. There is no file naming convention to distinguish between the two, so delineation may require the use of a DICOM viewer.

titleCitations & Data Usage Policy

Citations & Data Usage Policy 

Tcia head license access

titleData Citation

Grossberg  A, Mohamed A, Elhalawani H, Bennett W, Smith K, Nolan T, Chamchod S, Kantor M, Browne T, Hutcheson K, Gunn G, Garden A, Frank S, R osenthal D, Freymann J, Fuller C.(2017).  Data from Head and Neck Cancer CT Atlas. The Cancer Imaging Archive.  DOI: 10.7937/K9/TCIA.2017.umz8dv6s

titlePublication Citation

Grossberg  A, Mohamed A, Elhalawani H, Bennett W, Smith K, Nolan T,  Williams B, Chamchod S, Heukelom J, Kantor M, Browne T, Hutcheson K, Gunn G, Garden A, Morrison W, Frank S, R osenthal D, Freymann J, Fuller C. (2018) Imaging and Clinical Data Archive for Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma Patients Treated with Radiotherapy. Scientific Data 5 :180173 (2018) DOI: 10.1038/sdata.2018.173

titleTCIA Citation

Clark K, Vendt B, Smith K, Freymann J, Kirby J, Koppel P, Moore S, Phillips S, Maffitt D, Pringle M, Tarbox L, Prior F. (2013) The Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA): Maintaining and Operating a Public Information Repository, Journal of Digital Imaging, 26:6 pp 1045-1057. DOI:  10.1007/s10278-013-9622-7

Other Publications Using This Data

TCIA maintains a list of publications that leverage TCIA data. If you have a manuscript you'd like to add please contact the TCIA Helpdesk. Below are some of the gathered publications using this data:

  1.  Chamchod S., et al. Quantitative body mass characterization before and after head and neck cancer radiotherapy: A challenge of height-weight formulae using computed tomography measurement. Oral Oncol. 2016 Oct;61:62-9. doi: 10.1016/j.oraloncology.2016.08.012.
  2. Grossberg AJ, Chamchod S, Fuller CD, et al. Association of Body Composition With Survival and Locoregional Control of Radiotherapy-Treated Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma. JAMA Oncol. 2016;2(6):782-789. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2015.6339


Version 1 (Current): 2019/07/11

Data TypeDownload all or Query/FilterLicense
Images (DICOM)

Tcia restricted license

Clinical (XLS)

Tcia cc by 3

Data Dictionary (XLS)

Tcia cc by 3