Our Proton Therapy Experts
Miami Cancer Institute features a nationally and internationally recognized team of experts that knows how best to utilize proton therapy for each patient. Our team, who collectively have more than 25 years of proton therapy experience, not only takes care of our patients under active treatment, but also are involved in cutting-edge clinical research that stands to improve the outcomes of cancer patients for years to come. And if our experts determine another radiation therapy would benefit you more than proton therapy, Miami Cancer Institute offers all the latest radiation therapies available, so you don’t have to travel anywhere else to get the best cancer treatment for you.
Cancers We Treat
The following diseases are treated with proton therapy at Miami Cancer Institute. Although some patients will benefit from this treatment more than others, you’re welcome to request a consultation with one of our experts to find out if proton therapy is right for you.
- Base-of-skull tumors
- Brain tumors
- Breast cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Gastrointestinal cancer
- Gynecologic cancer
- Head and neck cancer
- Liver cancer
- Lung cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Paraspinal tumors
- Pediatric cancers
- Prostate cancer
- Spinal cord tumors
What is Proton Therapy?
Proton therapy is an advanced form of radiation therapy that uses high-energy protons to treat tumors. Unlike traditional radiation therapy, which uses X-rays, proton therapy uses streams of particles called protons to deliver the radiation dose to the cancer cells. Because protons completely stop inside the tumor, the specific radiation dose is delivered solely to the tumor without injuring the surrounding healthy tissue.
Difference From Traditional Photon Radiation Therapy
Both photon therapy and proton therapy kill cancer cells by depositing a dose of radiation in the cancer cells that are within the tumor. But in standard photon treatments, X-rays pass through healthy tissues and organs on the way in and out of the body, delivering the radiation to unnecessary organs. In comparison, the physical properties of protons make it possible for them to stop within the tumor and generate very precise, 3D dose distributions that conform to the shape of the tumor and reduce the amount of radiation exposure to normal tissue.
How does Proton Therapy Work?
Benefits of Proton Therapy with Pencil Beam Scanning Precision
Our Proton Therapy Center treats with the most advanced and highly precise form of proton therapy available. Like a 3D printer, small pencil beams of protons are delivered to the tumor, one layer at a time, until the entire tumor is treated. Pencil beam scanning allows for more complex shaping of the radiation dose to conform to the shape of the tumor as compared to older proton technology. This advanced technology results in reduced dose to surrounding normal tissue adjacent to the tumor.
How Pencil Beam Scanning Works
Advantages of Using Proton Therapy For Children
If your family is facing childhood cancer, proton therapy offers a new measure of hope for effectiveness and gentleness. Proton therapy’s ability to minimize unwanted side effects makes it ideal for pediatric cancers requiring radiotherapy treatment.
Proton therapy’s precise dose distributions offer a significant advantage over photon radiotherapy. Because of the reduced radiation exposure possible with proton therapy, children will benefit from reduced clinical side effects during and shortly after treatment, as well as a decrease in the development of long-term side effects.
"By using proton therapy, we have the capability of stopping this tumor from growing and enabling Anayed to grow up and lead a relatively normal life without the side effects of conventional radiation therapy."
Using Proton Therapy With Other Treatments
Depending on your specific cancer type and other factors, proton therapy may be used in combination with traditional radiation, chemotherapy and/or with surgery. Our team of cancer experts will work together to recommend the best treatment for your specific type of cancer and its location, as well as for your individual needs.
Availability of Proton Therapy in the U.S
Currently, the number of facilities offering proton therapy is limited because the equipment is expensive. Facilities typically have highly specialized equipment, such as a particle accelerator and beamline, which reside in a large, specially shielded building. In addition, proton therapy requires a team of specially trained scientists, physicians and engineers to keep the equipment maintained and operating properly.
Despite the cost, Miami Cancer Institute chose to invest in proton beam therapy for its numerous benefits to patients. We believe that this next-generation of advanced cancer care may likely become the new standard for cancer treatments and that it will become more widely available in the future.
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Learn More about Proton Therapy
To learn more about proton therapy, please view the following information provided by The National Association for Proton Therapy.
Is it right for me?
Even if you have been told that you are a good candidate for traditional radiation therapy, proton therapy may be an option.
Your medical team will provide information about whether you are a good candidate for proton therapy after evaluating your specific needs. We will consider factors like your type of cancer, its location and your physical well-being. Your team of cancer experts at Miami Cancer Institute may also recommend other treatments in conjunction with proton therapy.
While the benefits of proton therapy are numerous, it may not be the best treatment for your specific type of cancer, and a different course of treatment may be recommended. With all of the most advanced treatment technologies available at Miami Cancer Institute, rest assured your team will fully discuss these recommendations with you so you can feel confident in making the best treatment choice.
If you would like to request a consultation, please call 786-596-2000 or fill out our online form. and our team will be happy to help you.
Your Proton Therapy Experience
At Miami Cancer Institute, we believe that every patient deserves exceptional care – with the best possible treatment options and the highest level of compassion. Our expert team and state-of-the-art technology are combined under one roof, so your treatment is more convenient and less disruptive to your life.
Upon arrival, you’ll be warmly greeted by our staff who will tend to every aspect of your treatment with skill and kindness.
Our patients helped with the design of our facility and beautiful outdoor spaces. The result is an environment that promotes healing: a tranquil setting filled with natural light that radiates comfort. The three treatment rooms at the Proton Therapy Center – named Honor, Overcome and Positive – were designed with soft lighting, ample privacy and comfortable amenities to enhance your treatment experience.
Proton Therapy Treatments
Typically, you will receive proton therapy as an outpatient with no overnight hospital stay required. The number of treatment sessions will vary based upon your type and stage of cancer.
The first step will be developing your individual treatment plan based upon specialized CT or MRI scans. You’ll be placed on a treatment table in the same position that you will receive treatment. Your treatment team will then determine the amount of radiation to deliver over a certain period of time. Generally, when patients have proton therapy treatments, they come to the center several times a week over a period of multiple weeks.
When it’s time for treatment, you will be placed on a table and X-rays will be taken to make sure you are properly positioned. We will also use some form of immobilization to make sure you don’t move during treatment – proton therapy is that accurate. Each treatment session generally takes from 10 to 15 minutes, and you will not feel the proton radiation as it is administered. You may be repositioned several times and the process repeated.
Our staff closely monitors your treatment, and you will be able to communicate with them the entire time your therapy is taking place. Rarely do patients require anesthesia during treatment, although sedatives may be given to younger children so they can remain completely still during their session. Usually, patients can resume normal activities immediately after treatment.
Proactive Approach to Managing Side Effects
At Miami Cancer Institute, we understand your concern about how cancer treatments may affect your day-to-day life. We help you understand what to expect during each phase of your treatment and our team takes a proactive approach to managing any side effects.
Our specially trained radiation oncologists and physicists understand how to optimize proton technology to increase the dose to your tumor in a shorter treatment duration, while reducing the dose to surrounding healthy tissue. In fact, with proton therapy, the dose may be increased beyond what traditional radiation will allow. But because normal tissue is spared, there are fewer side effects and a better quality of life.
South Florida's First Proton Therapy Center
Hilton Miami Dadeland Hotel
Hilton Miami Dadeland is located right on the Baptist Hospital campus. It is a full-service hotel offering signature services of Hilton Hotels & Resorts with a distinct focus on wellness. Its central location offers patients and their families a convenient, comfortable place to stay while receiving medical care at any of Baptist Health's facilities.