Treating With Proton Therapy

Protons can be controlled with greater precision than X-rays. This means that more energy goes into destroying the tumor and less radiation is delivered to surrounding healthy tissue. For this reason, proton therapy is particularly good for treating tumors near healthy organs, including head and neck tumors.1-10

Head and neck tumors treated with proton therapy include:7,8,12

  • Nasopharynx (back of the nose where it meets the throat)
  • Nasal (nose) cavity
  • Paranasal sinuses (sinuses in the face)
  • Oropharynx (area of the throat at the back of the mouth), including the tonsils and base of tongue

Request more information or call 877.887.5807 to learn if you can benefit from proton therapy.

Chicago Proton Center Tom Garrett Patient Story
Watch a Video: Proton Therapy for Head/Neck CancerTo learn more about other tumor types, visit our Video Library.

Studies Show Reduced Risk

More than 60,000 Americans are diagnosed annually with head and neck cancer. When treating head and neck tumors it’s critical to protect the delicate organs that surround the tumor. Proton therapy can substantially reduce damage to eyes, optic nerves, salivary glands, and other tissue and organs near head and neck tumors.7-9 Proton therapy also reduces the likelihood of side effects such as blindness, hearing deterioration, and dry mouth.8,11

A recent study from MD Anderson found that the use of feeding tubes in oropharyngeal carcinoma cancer patients treated with intensity modulated proton therapy decreased by more than 50 percent compared to patients treated with intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).13 Secondary malignancies are also less likely with proton therapy.7

The images on the left are from a study of cancer of the nasopharynx. The study found that proton therapy significantly reduced exposure to the spinal cord, ear canal, thyroid, and other critical organs compared with X-rays in the form of intensity-modulated radiation therapy.8

Chicago Proton Center

Contact Us

To discover if you or a loved one could benefit from proton therapy, please call us at 877.887.5807 (TTY for hearing impaired, call 630.933.4833) or request more information.