Proton Therapy Treatment Comparisons for Various Diagnoses

The table below reports long-term side effects of photon radiation and ongoing treatments needed to manage each long-term treatment-related side effect. The table also shows some long-term advantages of proton therapy.

Treatment Comparisons

Indication Long-term treatment-related side effects of photon therapy Advantages of proton therapy Ongoing treatments needed to manage each long-term treatment-related side effect
– Low Grade Gloma
– Meningioma
– Pituitary Adenomas
– Chordoma
– Chondrosarcoma
– Cognitive dysfunction
– Endocrinopathies
– Inner ear and hearing damage
– Visual/optic pathway damage
– Decreased dose to parts of the brain and therefore less risk of cognitive dysfunction
– Decreased risk of endocrinopathies
– Decreased dose to inner ear
– Decreased dose to optic pathways
– Endocrinology referral and supportive treatments
– Hearing aid support
– Visual aids/glasses/referrals
– Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (mediastinal forms)
– Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (mediastinal forms)
– Cardiac toxicity
– Breast tissue damage/radiation exposure
– Increased risk of secondary cancers
– Decreased cardiac dose
– Decreased dose to the breast
– Decreased risk of secondary cancers
– Cardiac support/referrals/
monitoring/medications as required
– Monitoring/diagnostics
– Secondary cancer prevention/early detection
– Paranasal sinus
– Salivary Glands
– Nasopharyngeal
– Tonsil tumours
– Visual disturbances, partial blindness
– Inability to deliver an effective radiation dose safely
– Long-term dysphagea
– Need for long-term supportive nutrition/PEG
– Hearing loss
– Cognitive dysfunction
– Decreased dose to optical pathways
– Allows for safe dose escalation
– Decreased brain tissue exposure with subsequent decreased risk of cognitive dysfunction
– Decreased dose to inner ear
– Decreased dose to oesophagus and therefore decreased risk of swallowing difficulties and the need for supportive nutrition
– Supportive nutrition
– PEG insertion/PEG management
– Specialised dietician care
– Specialist referrals/nursing care
– Non-small cell bronchogenic – Bronchial toxicity
– Higher risk of spinal lesions
– Risk of partial paralysis & hypoesthesia
– Higher risk of pneumonitis
– Decreased bronchial toxicity
– Reduced risk of pneumonitis
– Reduced dose to spinal cord with reduced risk of spinal lesions/partial paralysis/hypoesthesia
– Specialist referrals
– Paralysis management
– Physiotherapy
– Pancreatic – Inability to achieve a therapeutic dose with photons
– Very poor prognosis
– Potential to achieve local control with dose escalation using protons – Pain management
– Anal – Post-radiation cystitis
– Bleeding
– Fibrosis
– Pain
– Increased risk of bowel movement difficulties
– Decreased dose to bowel
– Decreased dose to abdominal cavity
– Decreased dose to bladder
– Decreased risk of bleeding
– Decreased risk of fibrosis and post-radiation cystitis
– Bowel management
– Pain management
– Retroperitoneal & Abdominal Sarcomas – Inability to achieve a therapeutic dose with photons
– Very poor prognosis
– Potential to achieve local control with dose escalation using protons – Pain management
– Paediatric tumours requiring craniospinal irradiation – Spinal growth retardation
– Endocrine insufficiencies from pituitary gland, hypothalamus
– Thyroid injury
– Hearing loss
– Secondary malignant neoplasms (SMN)
– Decreased dose to spine
– Decreased dose to parts of brain and therefore less risk of cognitive dysfunction
– Decreased risk of endocrinopathies
– Decreased dose to inner ear
– Decreased dose to optic pathways
– Endocrinology referral and supportive treatments
– Hearing aid support
– Visual aids/glasses/referrals
– Spinal treatments
– Monitoring of secondary malignancies
– Paediatric tumours requiring brain-only irradiation – Cognitive dysfunction
– Endocrinopathies
– Inner ear and hearing damage
– Visual/optic pathway damage
– Secondary cancers
– Decreased dose to parts of brain and therefore less risk of cognitive dysfunction
– Decreased risk of endocrinopathies
– Decreased dose to inner ear
– Decreased dose to optic pathways
– Endocrinology referral and supportive treatments
– Hearing aid support
– Visual aids/glasses/referrals
– Monitoring of secondary malignancies
– Breast – Cardiac toxicity
– Breast tissue damage/radiation exposure
– Increased risk of secondary cancers
– Decreased cardiac dose
– Decreased dose to the breast
– Decreased risk of secondary cancers
– Cardiac support/referrals/ monitoring/medications as required
– Monitoring/diagnostics
– Secondary cancer prevention/early detection

Diagnoses we treat


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