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News1991August › Cancer cure that kills › August 1991

Cancer cure that kills

A study of a new kind of whizzy radiation treatment had to be aborted when it was found patients were a third more likely to die with the new therapy than with conventional x-ray treatment

A study of a new kind of whizzy radiation treatment had to be aborted when it was found patients were a third more likely to die with the new therapy than with conventional x-ray treatment.

The high energy fast neutron radiotherapy, using neutron beams, thought to have several biological advantages over conventional x-ray treatment, was tested on patients with advanced pelvic tumours of the cervix, bladder, prostate and rectum.

The study concluded that the risk of mortality for conventional treatment was two thirds that of the neutron treatment.

This conclusion caused the trial, conducted at the Medical Research Council Cyclotron Unit in Wirral to be abandoned.


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