New Prostate Cancer Treatment Gives Grandfather Merry Christmas
By Charles Bassett, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- This Christmas is very special for a metro grandfather. Not only will he get to see his grandchildren, he can actually hold them thanks to his new cancer treatment therapy.
Some cancer treatments involve radiation which can be dangerous after the treatment. But this new technique removes the danger.
Dick Marshall has prostate cancer and thanks to a new therapy, he can see and play with his grandchildren.
He's getting proton treatments at the Procure Proton Therapy Center in northwest Oklahoma City.
"I had heard about proton therapy from several of my friends who experienced prostate cancer and I thought it sounded like a real viable alternative for me," said Dick Marshall.
Patients are treated in rooms where a proton beam passes through the patient attacking the tumor.
"Protons are more like a firecracker. You can put the firecracker in the middle of the cancer doing a lot of damage to the cancer but very little damage to the normal tissues immediately surrounding the cancer," said Dr. Sameer Keole.
Dr. Keole said traditional x-rays are effective at treating cancer but they can damage surrounding tissue.
Another effective treatment is seed therapy. Radioactive seeds are placed into the prostate, but the patient remains mildly radioactive for several months.
"There's a theoretical concern that that could be a danger to developing tissues such as those in children or pregnant women," said Dr. Keole.
And that was another reason Marshall chose proton therapy and his family is glad he did.
"They love their pops, and if he wasn't able to hold them it would be really hard to help explain that and they wouldn't understand. Plus it's a big burden off me," said Melissa Lawton, Dick Marshall's daughter.
Marshall said he has few side effects and he feels great. Marshall has to get 44 treatments and he's already had 19.