How to Treat a Brain Tumor: New Treatment May Cause Less Side Effects
X-ray radiotherapy is a very common method for treating malignant brain tumors, but may cause hearing loss and cognitive deterioration (also known as chemo brain) long term. A recent study published by Lancent Oncology shows that proton radiotherapy may treat brain tumors in children with the same effectiveness as X-ray radiotherapy, and also causes less side effects.
This study was carried out by a team of doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital. This is how how Torunn Yock, one of the people in charge of the study, describes the proton radiotherapy radiotherapy in a medulloblastoma treatment, a type of rapidly growing tumor at the base of the brain.
“Proton radiotherapy still isn’t widely available in the United States or in the rest of the world, but it’s more and more known for its potential to reduce side effects from the treatment, especially in children”. Yock adds, “In the centers that have experience with it, proton therapy has a successfully proven history and a safe treatment”.
“Although we are currently investigating the differences in quality of life between proton and photon treatments, I really believe that (the smallest kids in particular) the capacity to offer proton therapy may make a big difference in their lives”, says Yock.
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