Top 10 Myths about Proton Therapy for Prostate Cancer

In an effort to help newly diagnosed men and shed light on the misinformation about proton therapy in the media, we ran a series of articles about the ten most common misrepresentations, or "myths," about proton therapy for prostate cancer. In our "Mythbuster Series" below, we set the record straight based on facts, published data, and by our own patient surveys as well as surveys by the National Association for Proton Therapy.

  Myth #1


Proton therapy is experimental and investigational. It is a new, untested science. Learn the truth.


  Myth #2


Proton therapy is significantly more expensive than conventional radiation treatments. Learn the truth.


  Myth #3


Proton therapy is no better than advanced forms of conventional photon (X-ray) radiation treatment, such as IMRT, IGRT, CyberKnife, TomoTherapy or RapidArc. And, there may be more rectal damage with proton. Learn the truth.


  Myth #4


Proton therapy is not recommended for patients with a high Gleason score. Learn the truth.


  Myth #5


If you have surgery and it fails, you can always have proton afterward. But if you have proton first and it fails, you cannot have surgery. Learn the truth.


  Myth #6


My doctor tells me that the only way to be sure I’m cured is to have the prostate removed from my body. With proton therapy, the prostate is left behind, so my chance of a recurrence is higher. Learn the truth.


  Myth #7


There is no data/statistics available to support the success of proton therapy. Learn the truth.


  Myth #8


Proton is radiation, and that means I am at risk for secondary cancer from proton treatment later in life, just as I am with IMRT. Learn the truth.


  Myth #9


If protons were so good, than [fill in name of prestigious institution] would have a proton center. Learn the truth.


  Myth #10


I can't afford to take the time away from work and family required for proton therapy. I can get my treatment locally in a much shorter time and expect the same results. Learn the truth.


  Bonus Myth


My urologist tells me I’m not a good candidate for proton therapy because I’m a young guy and that young men should have their prostate taken out surgically. Learn the truth.