Proton therapy can treat many types of cancers and tumors in children and, while reducing or eliminating side effects is always the objective, it is particularly important with pediatric patients. Children’s bodies are still growing and therefore can be more sensitive to the damaging effects of radiation.
Pencil beam scanning (PBS) and intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) are two techniques used at the Beaumont Proton Therapy Center that allow precise control over proton radiation delivery to the tumor site and avoids nearby healthy structures. This delivers the dose to the target and spares the tissue around the tumor.
Care for our pediatric patients involve a team of experts. In addition to our pediatric-trained radiation oncologists and pediatric medical oncologists, we include a skilled pediatric anesthesia team, oncology nurses, child life specialists, dieticians and a pediatric physical therapy team in the assessment of our patients. Our team approach offers families support services that limit the disruptions a cancer diagnosis can cause and ease the patient’s transition once the treatment is complete.
Planning images from a pediatric patient show the significant decrease in radiation exposure to surrounding tissue and organs: