Proton Therapy for Head and Neck Cancer

  • Joseph K. Kim
  • Jonathan E. Leeman
  • Nadeem Riaz
  • Sean McBride
  • Chiaojung Jillian Tsai
  • Nancy Y. LeeEmail author
Head and Neck Cancer (L Licitra, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Head and Neck Cancer

Opinion statement

The application of proton beam radiation therapy in the treatment of head and neck cancer has grown tremendously in the past few years. Globally, widespread interest in proton beam therapy has led to multiple research efforts regarding its therapeutic value and cost-effectiveness. The current standard of care using modern photon radiation technology has demonstrated excellent treatment outcomes, yet there are some situations where disease control remains suboptimal with the potential for detrimental acute and chronic toxicities. Due to the advantageous physical properties of the proton beam, proton beam therapy may be superior to photon therapy in some patient subsets for both disease control and patient quality of life. As enthusiasm and excitement for proton beam therapy continue to increase, clinical research and widespread adoption will elucidate the true value of proton beam therapy and give a greater understanding of the full risks and benefits of proton therapy in head and neck cancer.


Head and neck neoplasms Proton therapy Radiotherapy 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Joseph K. Kim, Jonathan E. Leeman, Nadeem Riaz, Sean McBride, Chiaojung Jillian Tsai, and Nancy Y. Lee declare they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

References and Recommended Reading

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph K. Kim
    • 1
  • Jonathan E. Leeman
    • 1
  • Nadeem Riaz
    • 1
  • Sean McBride
    • 1
  • Chiaojung Jillian Tsai
    • 1
  • Nancy Y. Lee
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Radiation OncologyMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer CenterNew YorkUSA

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