Proton Therapy Center
Proton therapy is a medical treatment that destroys cancer tissues with high-energy accelerated protons which are present in the nucleus of hydrogen atoms. While having less impact on healthy tissues, the proton particles run through the body and focus as much energy as possible on tumors before they disappear. Therefore, this therapy causes less adverse effects than the existing X-ray radiation therapy and still proves effectiveness.
SMC’s Proton Therapy Center will start treatment late 2015 and specialists from the Department of Radiation Oncology will consult patients and provide the proton therapy and other optimal radiation therapies.
The proton therapy is basically applicable to any case where the X-ray radiation therapy is possible. Mostly, it is applied when it is hard to limit X-ray radiation to surrounding healthy tissues and radiate tumors sufficiently. The indications of the proton therapy may include liver cancer, pancreatic and bile duct cancer, inoperable lung cancer, head, neck, and eye tumors, brain cancer, brain stem tumors, spinal and spinal cord tumors, pediatric cancer, prostatic cancer, and a relapse after radiation treatment.
SMC’s Department of Radiation Oncology has rich clinical experience as it has treated 50,000 patients for 21 years since its opening in 1994. The Department can also provide patients with the most suitable treatment, equipped with special cutting-edge X-ray therapy equipment including tomotherapy systems and Novalis Tx as well as next-generation proton therapy equipment with adjustable intensity.
At the same time, the Department has set up the best possible cancer treatment practices which gathers multidisciplinary know-how for each type of cancers from specialized cancer departments. Also for non-treatment services (i.e. wellness services), specialists do their best to improve patients’ quality of life.
SMC’s proton therapy equipment has assist devices: the respiratory gated system that tracks down the movement of tumors due to breathing and the cone beam CT which spots the location of tumors accurately just before the therapy. It can also deliver efficient personalized treatment with a multi-leaf collimator as well as the intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) by using cutting-edge line scanning beams.
Only a few institutes including MD Anderson Cancer Center publish data about the therapy’s clinical efficacy. SMC’s Proton Therapy Center is currently developing a system where patients can report their symptoms and side effects to evaluate them. Also, through prospective clinical studies, the Center will become a global leader by providing evidence for the proton therapy and making evidence-based medicine possible.