MILWAUKEE— In just about two years, Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin will be home to the first location where proton therapy will be available to Wisconsinites battling cancer.
Dr. Christopher Schultz has been with Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin for 32 years. He now sits as the chair and professor in the department of radiation oncology.
“It’s been a wonderful journey it gives me the opportunity to use my interest in science and also being able to apply that to taking care of patients,” Schultz said.
Schultz and his team will soon have a more advanced and targeted way to treat patients with cancer with a newly built area holding proton therapy.
“It’s a very important tool that we add to a very robust toolbox honestly. This is something that we have had our eye on for the past 20 years and I think the time is right with the technology to add this to our toolbox,” Schultz said.
Proton therapy, put simply, is a form of radiation cancer treatment that pinpoints hard to reach tumors and can lessen tissue damage during treatment.
“The advantage of that radiation distribution and dose to that tissue to shape it so that we really limit it to the tumor that we are trying to treat and completely avoid the other tissues in and around,” Schultz said.
For Schultz, an added benefit is being connected with Children’s Wisconsin, which takes care of kids with cancer in Wisconsin and many other states.
“Children are a group of patients with cancer that can benefit significantly with the way that the proton therapy works. It allows us to spare the tissues in a way that is particularly important in the pediatric population,” Schultz said.
Schultz believes having this type of advanced care for patients will allow them to heal and not have to travel to other states to receive life saving treatment while battling cancer.