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Highlights from the PTCOG Conference in Japan

Highlights from the PTCOG Conference in Japan

Physics innovations. New techniques for better outcomes. Streamlined operations. These are just a few of the important presentations our staff gave at the recent Particle Therapy Co-Operative Group (PTCOG) conference in Japan. PTCOG studies and promotes particle radiology’s application in the fight against cancer. 

Here are some highlights from our participation at the conference:

Alex Egan, one of our physicists, presented an SCCA Proton Therapy Center innovation: a custom snout extension for treatment of ocular cancer that improves dosimetric beam properties and patient set-up. This small, removable device can be attached to a conventional snout (where the beam exits the machine and enters the patient) to improve the treatment of ocular melanoma. 

Two other staff—Angela Fung, a dosimetrist, and Dominic Maes, a physicist—presented papers on dose calculations, looking at pencil beam and the Monte Carlo calculation algorithm, in chest wall and lung cancers. Monte Carlo is becoming the industry gold standard for dose calculations and will be the next upgrade planned at SCCA Proton Therapy Center to improve patient outcomes.

Dr. Zeng and Dr. Apisarnthanarax presented their findings on comparing outcomes between protons and intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) for esophageal cancer. The good and exciting news they found was that older proton patients--who usually suffer more side effects or complications than younger patients--did as well as younger IMRT patients.

Even our VP of Operations participated. Jason Dixon gave a presentation titled: Dynamic Operational Staffing Models based on Patients Under Beam for Proton Centers, which spoke to the Center’s ability to minimize delays and offer cost-effective care solutions.

Congrats to our big-brained, amazing staff!