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National Cancer Center Hospital East

Conditions Treated
Skull Base Tumors, Head and Neck Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Early-Stage and Locally Advanced Lung Cancer, Liver Cancer, Pediatric Tumors, Metastatic Lung Tumors, etc.

Treatment Methods (Proton Therapy for Cancer)

Radiation therapy, in which cancer cells are destroyed and/or their proliferation hindered by irradiating the tumor site, is considered the standard form of cancer treatment. However, the use of ordinary photon beams such as X-rays and gamma rays has always been seen as problematic, as normal tissue surrounding the tumor is invariably exposed to radiation as well, thus causing unwanted side effects, Particle radiation therapy (proton therapy and heavy particle radiotherapy) was therefore initially developed to allow for a more accurate irradiation of the tumor tissue.

In proton therapy, protons (hydrogen atom nuclei) are accelerated to close to 60% the speed of light, and used to irradiate the tumor tissue. As pinpoint irradiation is possible, there is little damage caused to the surrounding tissues when compared to the use of conventional photon beams. Today, there are 35 particle beam treatment facilities and research institutes around the world, 8 of which are located in Japan. Of these, 6 institutes offer proton therapy.

Furthermore, only at our hospital can you experience the use of Japan’s single cyclotron accelerator, which can provide protons in the form of high intensity and continuous beams. This permits rapid irradiation of the tumor, which in turn vastly reduces the burden placed on the patient. Since patient movement is minimized during the irradiation period, tumors can be targeted far more accurately. Finally, a rotating gantry system is used, enabling us to irradiate the tumor at an optimal angle.

This hospital was also the first in the world to successfully develop and clinically apply the beam ON-LINE PET system, which is mounted on a rotating gantry port (BOLPs-RGp) and provides the means for a real time visualization of the irradiated area. Previously, there had been no method available of confirming whether a tumor site had been accurately irradiated. However, through the use of this system, we are now able to perform treatment while simultaneously confirming that the tumor is being accurately irradiated with protons, ultimately allowing for a higher precision proton therapy. At present, we are the only hospital in the world offering this system.

Features of Our Hospital

This hospital was established in 1992 as the second hospital of the National Cancer Center, concentrating on cancer research and treatment. With a clinical development center established within the organization, the National Cancer Center Hospital East is dedicated to applying the latest research breakthroughs in clinical practice. In an effort to treat our cancer patients, various medical departments related to the treatment of cancer collaborate and exchange information. Even if a patient is to be treated with proton therapy, it is still possible to administer an optimal and comprehensive in-house cancer treatment plan; for example, depending on the type of cancer, chemotherapy can be used as well, or the tumor can be minimized primarily through excision.

Treatment Results

Stage IV Nasal Cavity and
Nasal Sinus Cancer
5-Year Local Control Rate 72%
Stage I Non-Small-Cell
Lung Cancer
5-Year Survival Rate 63%
Low- to Moderate-Risk
Prostate Cancer
5-Year Biochemical Disease-Free
Survival Rate 94%

Our institution was the first in Japan to introduce a proton therapy system exclusively for medical treatment, and the second hospital in the world to commence its clinical application. Thanks to our extensive clinical experience, we have become recognized as a global authority in the field of proton therapy. In addition to our clinical activities, several of the few medical physicists in the world are on our staff, and they are currently conducting research on the latest in proton therapy techniques.

They are achieving results in research areas such as the visualization of the world’s most advanced irradiation range.

A Message to International Patients from Our Hospital

Dr. Tetsuo Akimoto
Dr. Tetsuo Akimoto
Director of the Particle Therapy and Radiation Oncology Division

Dr. Tetsuichiro Muto
Dr. Teiji Nishio
Unit Leader, Particle Therapy and Radiation Oncology Division

Using Japan’s only cyclotron accelerator, we are confident that our hospital’s proton therapy can provide more effective, quicker and more accurate cancer treatment, which effectively places less stress on the patient. Moreover, since our facility specializes in the comprehensive treatment of cancer, we are able to combine various other therapies, depending on the condition of the actual disease, in order to achieve even better results. By making use of our clinical development center, we are now in the process of developing various forms of irradiation technology, dose simulation technology, and image guidance technology, and we predict that within the next 1-2 years, we will be able to perform Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy (IMPT) in therapeutic applications, something that, at present, is still in the research stage worldwide.

This hospital, providing highly accurate proton therapy using state-of-the-art technology, is located only 30 minutes from Akihabara Station by train, allowing patients from overseas who are staying in Tokyo to receive treatment on an outpatient basis. We are already treating numerous patients from China, South Korea, and Taiwan.

Overview of the Treatment Schedule (Model Case)

We ask our patients to provide us with their medical history in advance, together with other relevant medical information and images, so that we are able to consider their admittance for treatment. Once we decide to admit a patient, we have them come to Japan after approximately 2 weeks.

Overview of Treatment Schedule

Photos

External View of Our Hospital Entrance Hallway The entranceway has a two-floor vaulted ceiling, and this open space provides a sense of freedom and hotel-like comfort. Patient’s Room (Special Room A) This spacious room is thoughtfully prepared to offer you a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere.
External View of Our Hospital Cyclotron Accelerator for Proton Therapy
Provides continuous and strong intensity proton beams, which are accelerated to close to 60% the speed of light.
Rotating Gantry Proton Therapy Room utilizing state-of-the-art image guidance technology. There are 3 treatment rooms, of which one contains a BOLPs-RGp, robotic bed, detection and positioning system consisting of two opposing transparent flat panels, and a self-propelled in-room CT device. Through this, high precision proton irradiation that accurately targets the tumor’s location is made possible.
Established 1992
Clinical Departments
Head and Neck Oncology/Plastic Surgery Breast Oncology/Medical Oncology. Thoracic Oncology Gastrointestinal Oncology, Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Oncology, Urology, Anesthesiology/Intensive Care Unit, Palliative Care/Psycho-Oncology, Diagnostic Radiology, Radiation Oncology, Pathology/Clinical Laboratories
Payment Methods
Cash Only (credit cards are not accepted)
Address
6-5-1 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa-shi, Chiba 277-8577

map

5 minutes from the Tsukuba Express
Kashiwanoha Campus Station by car
75 minutes from Tokyo International
Airport (Haneda Airport) by car
URL
http://www.ncc.go.jp/jp/ncce/