Physicists Try to Revive a Super-Safe, Decades-Old Cancer Treatment

  • Johnson thinks that a proton-based image, even a blurry one, can guide a cancer treatment known as proton therapy better than a conventional X-ray.
  • If you have a proton-based image, you can skip those conversions and design a more precise, more effective treatment plan, Johnson says.Advocates of proton therapy say that it’s the most advanced form of radiation therapy today.
  • “You don’t get any damage beyond the tumor itself,” says Bill Hansen, the director of proton therapy marketing at Varian, a company that makes cancer therapy machines for hospitals.
  • And because protons are more precise, a patient may not have to schedule as many appointments on a proton treatment plan compared to a conventional radiation one.As prices dropped, demand for the therapy rose a bit.
  • But most cancer patients aren’t kids, and the technology still hasn’t really taken off.Johnson and Schulte’s prototype doesn’t fix the cost barrier—it actually makes proton therapy more expensive.

Robert Johnson thinks that a proton-based image, even a blurry one, can guide a cancer treatment known as proton therapy better than a conventional X-ray.
Continue reading “Physicists Try to Revive a Super-Safe, Decades-Old Cancer Treatment”

Physicists Try to Revive a Super-Safe, Decades-Old Cancer Treatment

  • Johnson thinks that a proton-based image, even a blurry one, can guide a cancer treatment known as proton therapy better than a conventional X-ray.
  • If you have a proton-based image, you can skip those conversions and design a more precise, more effective treatment plan, Johnson says.Advocates of proton therapy say that it’s the most advanced form of radiation therapy today.
  • “You don’t get any damage beyond the tumor itself,” says Bill Hansen, the director of proton therapy marketing at Varian, a company that makes cancer therapy machines for hospitals.
  • And because protons are more precise, a patient may not have to schedule as many appointments on a proton treatment plan compared to a conventional radiation one.As prices dropped, demand for the therapy rose a bit.
  • But most cancer patients aren’t kids, and the technology still hasn’t really taken off.Johnson and Schulte’s prototype doesn’t fix the cost barrier—it actually makes proton therapy more expensive.

Robert Johnson thinks that a proton-based image, even a blurry one, can guide a cancer treatment known as proton therapy better than a conventional X-ray.
Continue reading “Physicists Try to Revive a Super-Safe, Decades-Old Cancer Treatment”