According to data shared by American Cancer Society of 2019 around 1762450 new cancer cases have been detected while already 606880 people have died from the disease. Research carried out to lessen the pain of therapy based treatment of the disease has discovered that though survival rates of X ray and Proton therapy are nearly the same, the risk of side effects is lower in proton therapy. Though treatment through radiation is regarded as one the most common cancer therapies when the disease is in its initial stages it has several detrimental side effects.
These radiation based side effects include fever, nausea, fatigue, diarrhea along with difficulty in eating and swallowing. According to radiation oncologist Dr. Brian C. Baumann of Washington University and lead author of this study proton therapy or proton beam therapy could have lesser side effects in comparison to X-ray based radiation. The details of their research will be presented at the Annual meeting of American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago. The research team examined medical details of 1500 cancer patients that were receiving combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy which is expected to cure cancers that have not spread across the body.
They then compared the experience of these patients with patients that had received proton chemoradiotherapy by collecting data about their side effects by focusing on just 3 side effects throughout their study period after making adjustments for age and comorbidities. The study revealed that risk of severe side effects was two third lower among people that received proton therapy within 90 day treatment cycle than among people that received X-ray radiation. In fact only 11.5 % of 391 patients that received proton therapy treatment experienced severe side effects within 3 months of treatment in comparison to 27.6 % patients that felt similar side effects when treated with X-Ray therapy.