Proton therapy has been gaining momentum recently and could soon be an effective treatment for lung cancer patients.
According to Healio, intensity-modulated proton therapy (IMPT) resulted in durable control with minimal toxicity among patients with recurrent lung cancer.
The results of a Multidisciplinary Thoracic Cancers Symposium study state that this new technique could offer a safe and potentially even more effective treatment option for patients with recurrent cancers, who, in the past, have been ruled ineligible for potentially curing treatments.
“Our study is the first to show that intensity-modulated proton therapy (IMPT) can be safe and effective for these patients and that it offers these patients a chance for lasting cancer control without adding significant toxicity,” said Jennifer Ho, MD, and radiation oncology resident at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.
New radiation techniques have emerged over the last few years that continue to play a role in the medical industry.
With proton treatment, up to 60% less radiation is delivered to the normal tissues around the tumor, which lowers the risk of radiation damage to healthy tissues.
Medscape reports that proton therapy has been studied for variety of cancer types and, despite the controversy surrounding proton treatment, is becoming increasingly popular.
Dr. Ho stated that roughly 20% to 30% of cancer patients feel moderate, severe, or even potentially fatal side effects after invasive radiation treatments because of the high rate of toxicities.
“Local recurrences are a common problem in lung cancer and patients do not have a lot of treatment options,” she added. “Most of them aren’t candidates for surgery, and offering a second course of radiation raises concerns about the cumulative dose causing damage to organs.”
“IMPT can precisely target the tumor and spare nearby normal tissue, to safely deliver a higher, curative radiation dose,” Dr. Ho added.