Proton beam therapy for the treatment of prostate cancer

Cancer J. Nov-Dec 2014;20(6):415-20. doi: 10.1097/PPO.0000000000000083.


Through unique physical dose deposition properties, proton beam therapy (PBT) potentiates radiation dose escalation to target tissue while minimizing radiation exposure to nontarget organs. Proton beam therapy has been used to treat prostate cancer for several decades; however, access to proton centers has been restricted to the limited number of proton centers. Because of recent enhancements in availability and treatment delivery systems, interest in PBT has been burgeoning among oncologists, industry experts, and prostate cancer patients. As a result, the importance of understanding the collective experience to date and technical aspects of PBT delivery has become increasingly important in cancer medicine. This review article is intended to discuss the fundamentals of PBT treatment, critically review the literature on PBT for localized prostate cancer, and describe the continued development of proton beam technology for the treatment of prostate cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Dose Fractionation, Radiation
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neoplasms, Radiation-Induced / prevention & control
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Proton Therapy* / adverse effects
  • Proton Therapy* / methods
  • Radiation Dosage
  • Radiotherapy, Intensity-Modulated / methods
  • Scattering, Radiation