Q&A with Prostate Cancer Patient, Dr. Mark Vaccaro

“Everyone at Texas Center for Proton Therapy was a knowledgeable professional who did their work in a true spirit of service to their patients.”
Mark Vaccaro
Prostate Cancer Survivor

With one in nine men expected to receive a prostate cancer diagnosis in his lifetime, it’s important to know all the treatment options that are available. Former patient Dr. Mark Vaccaro shares his experience and insight on prostate cancer in hopes of helping others who may be researching their own cancer diagnosis. Dr. Vaccaro is a fellowship-trained diagnostic radiologist who extensively researched his options for cancer care. He finished treatment at Texas Center for Proton Therapy in June of 2019.

What is your age and current city of residence?

I am 68 years old, and I’m from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

What was it like to be a medical doctor receiving a prostate cancer diagnosis?

Since six out of ten men my age have prostate cancer [according to the American Cancer Society], I was not surprised when I found out I had it. As a doctor, I knew the success rate for treatment of prostate cancer was very good.

How did your experience lead you to research your treatment options? 

To find out the latest treatment options I consulted my family practice physician, my urologist, a radiation oncologist who treats with conventional radiation and a radiation oncologist who treats with protons. I also read many articles about prostate cancer online. 

Why did you ultimately choose proton therapy?

I chose proton therapy because it is a highly effective treatment that precisely delivers protons to the prostate while minimizing damage to the adjacent normal tissues. Learn how it works.

Why did you choose Texas Center for Proton Therapy? 

I wanted a center with board-certified radiation oncologists who had prior experience using protons to treat cancer. There are three such doctors at Texas Center for Proton Therapy. I wanted a center with the latest technology to deliver the protons: pencil beam scanning. Texas Center for Proton Therapy has this. I wanted a center with a track record of treating patients with protons. At the time of my treatment, Texas Center for Proton Therapy had treated more than 1,500 patients.  I wanted a center with a large group of experienced radiation physicists, engineers and dosimetrists. Texas Center for Proton Therapy has such a team.

What was it like to be under the care of Dr. Andrew Lee

I felt confident that my treatment was planned properly and supervised well by Dr. Lee. He is a compassionate individual who is an expert in his field.

How was your overall experience at Texas Center for Proton Therapy? 

My experience was excellent. Everyone at Texas Center for Proton Therapy was a knowledgeable professional who did their work in a true spirit of service to their patients.

What advice might you give someone who has just found out they have prostate cancer?

Find out as much as you can about it online. Consult with several physicians knowledgeable about prostate cancer, including a radiation oncologist who treats with conventional radiation and a radiation oncologist who treats with protons. Talk with family and friends who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Consider joining a prostate cancer support group prior to starting treatment.

To learn more about proton therapy for prostate cancer, visit TexasCenterforProtonTherapy.com/ProstateCancer. Texas Center for Proton Therapy hosts a prostate cancer support group on the first Tuesday of every month. For additional inquiries or to make an appointment, call 469-513-5500.

The information included in this testimonial is based on one patient’s unique experience and is not intended to represent all patient outcomes or expectations.

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