SAN DIEGO – February 19, 2014 – Advanced Particle Therapy, LLC. celebrated the grand opening of the Scripps Proton Therapy Center in San Diego, CA today. The $220 million, state-of-the-art facility has already begun treating cancer patients with the most advanced form of radiation therapy available – proton therapy.
Proton therapy uses accelerated particles (protons) to precisely treat cancerous tumors throughout the body. Proton therapy is more precise than conventional forms of radiation treatment, delivering an exact, high dose of radiation to a tumor site while sparing surrounding healthy tissue and organs from damage. This sparing of healthy tissue means patients are better able to tolerate the highest doses of radiation and help avoid treatment-related secondary cancers and chronic diseases.
Scripps Proton Therapy Center will be operated by Scripps Health and Scripps Clinic Medical Group whose physician and physicist team bring more than 90 years of combined proton experience. The center is the nation’s 15th proton facility and will be the first in the country to treat patients exclusively with the ultra-accurate “pencil-beam scanning” technology.
“Pencil-beam scanning allows doctors to treat larger and more complicated tumors, while sparing more normal tissue and producing about one-tenth as many carcinogenic neutrons,” said Carl Rossi, M.D., the center’s medical director. “We’re essentially breaking down each tumor into thousands of tiny cubes, and then ‘painting’ each individual cube with radiation, layer by layer.”