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Proton Cancer Therapy Available in Singapore – Healthcare

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Proton Cancer Therapy Available in Singapore – Healthcare

After a two-year delay due to the COVID-19 pandemic, proton therapy is now available in Singapore for patients experiencing cancers in sensitive areas such as the head or neck. Proton therapy does not perform any better at killing cancer cells or shrinking tumors than conventional radiation therapy, however it causes much less damage to surrounding healthy tissue and organs. Furthermore, the use of this innovative therapy is expected to reduce side effects and growth and development problems in children and young adults.

At the moment the cost of treatment is high: about $60,000 to $70,000 at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital (MENH). But Dr. Lee said: ‘Reducing side effects may translate into cost savings in managing radiation side effects.’ Given the high costs, the Ministry of Health has limited the types of cancer that the proton beam can cure. In addition to head and neck cancers, proton beam can also be used to treat prostate cancer. In patients under the age of 25, it can also be used for spinal and pelvic tumors. (HANDLE).

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