Mayo Clinic unveils new proton beam radiotherapy center

Yesterday the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, unveiled the building in which its new proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) unit will be situated. However, it is clear from the article in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that the value and the cost-effectiveness of PBRT is still a major issue for many. It is not yet clear when the Mayo Clinic expects to start treating patients with PBRT.

5-year follow-up data after proton beam therapy

A new article in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology (the “Red” Journal) provides us with recent 5-year outcomes for men diagnosed with localized prostate cancer and treated with proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT). … READ MORE …

Payers tell PBRT centers that they need better data to justify high prices

According to media reports this morning, a number of payer organizations in the USA are initiating new policies regarding the coverage of proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) for the treatment of localized prostate cancer. … READ MORE …

Protons and profts: the economics that drive new medical technologies today

Luke Timmerman is a nationally respected health care journalist who specializes in writing about new healthcare technologies and writes regulary for an online business web site called Xconomy.com. Recently he took a tour of the new, $152 million ProCure proton beam radiation facility in Seattle. Click here to get his take.

No PBRT center at OHSU after careful thought

According to a pre-Christmas report in The Oregonian, Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) has decided not to go ahead with the development of a proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) facility. The story is also covered on MedPage Today. … READ MORE …

WSJ questions value of proton beam radiation therapy

Advocates for proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) are not going to be enamored of the article in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) on the cost/benefit ratio of this form of treatment for localized prostate cancer.

PBRT vs. IMRT — are we about to get the definitive trial?

According to an article in the Boston Globe this morning, we are (supposedly and finally) going to get the study needed to try to demonstrate whether there is a real clinical benefit to proton beam radiation therapy as compared to modern, intensity-modulated radiation therapy in men with localized prostate cancer! … READ MORE …

A matched, case-control study of EBRT + PBRT vs brachytherapy

It would be all too easy to get the idea — from the title and abstract of a recently published study — that proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) was more effective than permanent seed brachytherapy in the treatment of men with low- and some intermediate-risk prostate cancers. This would be a very inappropriate conclusion. … READ MORE …

What one hospital CEO thinks about PBRT

Paul Levy is the President and CEO of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston (which is no small institution). He is not an enthusiastic advocate for the sudden growth in the number of proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) centers in the US in the past 3 years. You want to see why, just click here. The comments following the article on his blog site are also educational.

Oncology Times reports on proton beam radiation therapy

Oncology Times has just completed a five-part series of what appear to be objective and impartial articles on proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) — as a form of treatment for many types of cancer, not just prostate cancer. … READ MORE …

Misleading information about proton beam therapy?

There are good data suggesting a significant potential value of proton beam radiotherapy (PBRT) in the treatment of prostate and other forms of cancer. It is therefore unwise of its advocates to “over sell” this treatment by publicizing outdated and potentially misleading information as if it were current. … READ MORE …