When treating regions near the chest, it can be difficult to deliver an effective dose without damaging healthy organs or tissue. By using proton therapy for thoracic cancers, doctors are able to deliver highly effective and very precise doses of protons to the tumor.
The image below demonstrates how proton therapy is more beneficial for the heart and lungs than traditional radiation.
Thoracic cancer ranges from lung to esophageal cancer and other cancers in the chest region. With traditional radiation treatment, side effects can impair patients' ability to swallow, which is an important factor in maintaining weight and overall nutrition. When treating thoracic cancer with proton therapy treatment, patients are less likely to experience these types of side effects as the radiation is able to target the tumor precisely and avoid all surrounding healthy tissue.
In addition to the precise radiation, proton therapy offers an advanced type of treatment called pencil beam scanning. This can deliver a single, narrow proton beam which brushes across the tumor like a paint brush to ensure the exact area of the tumor is treated. This type of technology is able to approach the tumor from multiple directions and minimize the dose to healthy organs and tissues such as the heart and spinal cord.
Our physicians have extensive experience in caring for patients with thoracic cancer and continue to make strides in treating the disease. With the latest technology, our patients are able to maintain everyday activities while undergoing proton therapy treatment for the different thoracic cancer types.