RandyW Posted July 30, 2008 Share Posted July 30, 2008 JACKSONVILLE, FL -- Some cancer patients are looking into alternative treatment options. Proton therapy is a unique form of radiation with fewer side effects and better tumor control. Doctors are able to treat a tumor precisely by directly hitting it with the proton treatment. This cancer treatment is offered at the University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute (UF PTI). It opened in August 2006. Since then, 850 patients have been to the institute. People can get treatment for brain tumors, prostate cancer and the head and neck. Recently, health professionals at the Proton Therapy Institute treated their first lung cancer patient. Children diagnosed with cancer can get proton treatment too. Stuart Klein, Executive Director at the UF PTI, told First Coast News the youngest person to ever receive treatment was 4-months-old. The Proton Therapy Institute in Jacksonville is one of five centers in the country. It is the only one in the Southeast. It has been open two years, but it is making history. Klein says it is the fastest start up of any proton facility. Health care professionals see about 100 patients a day. The center is open from 6:30 a.m. - 10 p.m. Klein says it is making an economic impact on the community. Many of the patients come from out of town to get the treatment. It's usually a 2 month process. So, they temporarily live in the community. They eat and shop. Research done by the center has found the out-of-town patients brought an estimated $2.5 - $3 million in room, board and entertainment revenue to the First Coast in the first year. ©2008 First Coast News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten, or redistributed. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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