How long does proton therapy take for breast cancer?
Proton therapy is a type of radiation therapy that uses proton beams to kill cancer cells.
Unlike traditional radiation therapy, proton therapy does not use X-rays. Experts think that proton therapy may be safer than other radiation therapies because it targets a specific area and has less of an impact on the healthy tissue around cancer cells.
In this article, we discuss proton therapy for breast cancer. We look at what it is, how it works, the procedure, and effectiveness.
What is proton therapy?
is a precise form of beam radiation therapy that uses energy from protons, or positively charged particles.
Because of its precision, proton beam therapy may improve survival rate by improving local tumor treatment and reducing injury to other organs, leading to fewer radiation-related side effects.
Having radiotherapy can increase the risk of heart-related complications. Proton therapy has a lower risk of these complications because it delivers less radiation to the heart compared to standard photon radiation therapy, according to a 2018 systematic review.
A review Trusted Source reports that the first recorded use of proton beam therapy in a hospital setting was in 1991 in Belgium. Since then, doctors have used proton beam therapy to treat thousands of cancers worldwide.
Proton therapy can treat solid tumors, but it cannot treat cancer cells that have metastasized to different parts of the body.
How does it work?
Radiation specialists use a synchrotron machine to accelerate protons up to 60% the speed of light. The speed of the protons creates a high amount of energy and pushes the protons through a nozzle directed at the body.
The protons travel to a specified depth in the body, where they deliver high doses of radiation to the tumor.