Conversation With: Dr. Andrew K. Lee, Head Of Dallas-Fort Worth’s First Proton Therapy Center

Publication: D Healthcare Daily, Dallas

June 29, 2015

Later this year, cancer patients throughout Dallas-Fort Worth will have access to a 220-ton machine known as a cyclotron that delivers concentrated doses of radiation directly to a tumor with minimal exposure to healthy tissue, a process that has been proven to minimize side effects. North Texas is currently the largest region without access to such a machine—Houston’s M.D. Anderson Cancer Center is the closest facility to offer the treatment, a regimen that can take as much as two months. In fact, a billboard near the exit off Interstate 35 to Texas State Highway 183 advertises that very fact.

But later this year, the drive to receive what’s known as proton therapy will shrink for North Texans. Texas Oncology, the U.S. Oncology Network, McKesson Specialty Health, and Baylor Scott & White Health has teamed up to create the Texas Center for Proton Therapy, located in Las Colinas. The 63,000-square foot, $105 million facility was built specifically to house that cyclotron.

And Dr. Andrew Lee, the man who launched M.D. Anderson’s proton therapy center, has been tapped to lead it. It will be the only such facility in North Texas until UT Southwestern opens its Dallas Proton Treatment Center in 2017.