Beaumont’s Proton Therapy Center
The Beaumont Proton Therapy Center is armed with one of the most innovative and comprehensive image-guidance systems for proton beam therapy on the market today.
Beaumont is the first pencil beam scanning (PBS) proton center in Michigan. The PBS technology is optimized for intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT), the type of proton therapy that is both fastest to deliver and with the best ability to spare healthy tissue.
With IMPT, doctors scan the tumor using the proton beam spot-by-spot and layer-by-layer. The adjacent critical normal structure will receive significantly minute radiation dose, which results in less damage to healthy tissue and decreased association with toxicities that can lead to secondary malignancies.
What is proton therapy?
Proton therapy is an advanced form of radiation treatment. It utilizes protons instead of X-rays to accurately treat cancer. A proton is a positively charged particle. When the protons are at high energy, they are able to combat cancer cells.
For protons to be effective against cancer, they need to be at high energy. A machine called a cyclotron helps the protons achieve this high energy. Then, the protons are able to travel to a specific depth in the body where they can deposit the specified radiation dose in the tumor.
How does proton therapy compare to traditional treatment?
Proton therapy is accurate and precise in depositing the radiation dose into the tumor. Due to the high level of precision, there is less damage to healthy tissues in comparison to traditional treatment. As a result, proton therapy patients experience fewer side effects.
Proton therapy is useful in treating:
Proton therapy for children
Proton therapy can treat many types of cancers/tumors in children. Since children’s bodies are still growing, children are more sensitive to damage to healthy tissue caused by radiation. They can experience more serious short-term and long-term side effects from X-ray radiation than adults. Studies that have been conducted on the use of protons for pediatric tumors show excellent results in controlling tumors, reducing damage to healthy tissue and lowering the risk of the tumor returning later in life.