2012 Volume 61 Issue 2 Pages 109-116
Particle therapy using protons or carbon ions is capable of delivering high-dose radiation to tumors while minimizing the dose delivered to organs at risk because of its precise dose distribution. Furthermore, carbon ions show higher biological effects compared to photons. More than thirty particle therapy facilities are currently available in the world, but most of them are proton centers and only six centers can utilize carbon ions. In Japan, nine particle therapy facilities are in operation, five are under construction or determined to be constructed, and many are in the planning phase. In general, primary malignant tumors without metastases are good indications of particle therapy, such as skull base tumors, head and neck cancers, lung cancers, liver cancers, prostate cancer, postoperative recurrence of rectal cancer, and bone and soft tissue tumors. This form of therapy has recently been used to treat an increasing number of patients. We will discuss the overview of clinical outcomes of particle therapy in this article.