It cost nearly ten million! Li Zongwei’s cancer cells are completely eliminated, can advanced anti-cancer therapy be popularized?

Li Zongwei believes that everyone has heard that besides being a famous badminton player, he also has an identity as a cancer patient.

In July 2018, Li Zongwei was diagnosed withStage III nasopharyngeal carcinomaFor this reason, he had to withdraw from two international competitions. After being diagnosed, Li Zongwei underwent treatment in a private hospital for 2 months. During this period, a total of 33 proton therapy sessions were performed, with an average of 5-6 sessions per week.

After the treatment, all the cancer cells in Li Zongwei’s body were eliminated, and he was soon discharged from the hospital.The treatment after suffering from cancer, Li Zongwei said that he spent nearly10 million yuan (Taiwan dollars)this price is unbearable for ordinary people.

So, what exactly is proton therapy? Why is it so effective against cancer?

The proton beam will be deeply adjusted at the location of the tumor,Inhibition of energy release near the skin/to the tumorOnce it reaches the tumor, it releases a large amount of energy instantlyEnergy release stops again after passing the tumor, to achieve targeted and efficient treatment. Although proton therapy was first used more than 50 years ago, it is still one of the most advanced and precise cancer radiation treatments in the world.

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So, what are the advantages of proton therapy?

①Small side effects:The therapy haspainless and noninvasiveIt has the characteristics of almost no damage to surrounding tissues, can protect the normal function of other organs and tissues, and reduce the possible side effects of treatment.

②Low cost:The initial cost of proton therapy is higher than traditional therapy, but it can reduce the cost of treatmentSide effects and risk of cancer recurrence. From the perspective of a complete treatment cycle, proton therapy can help patients save treatment costs and prolong survival.

③Good curative effect:Proton therapy uses larger particles, which can kill tumors better and more thoroughly.

Source: Ruijin Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine

While the advantages of proton therapy are clear, not all cancer patients have access to it. So, which cancer patients are candidates for proton therapy?

In general, proton therapy is available to cancer patients who are candidates for radiation therapy. In addition, most solid tumors that have not spread can also be treated, mainly including cancers of the brain, breast, lung, esophagus, liver, rectum, and prostate.

Although proton therapy is a good option for patients, the cost issue is still a problem that many patients need to face.

At the beginning of the article, Li Zongwei performed 33 proton treatments,It cost nearly 10 million Taiwan dollars (equivalent to 2 million RMB at the time).have to be aware of isDifferent countries have different charging standards for proton therapy. The United States generally charges per session.A full course of treatment costs 120,000 to 150,000 US dollars(about 900,000 RMB); Japan requiresAround 3 million yenapproximately equal to180,000 RMB; Germany costs in50,000 to 60,000 Euros, about 400,000 RMB.In my country, the price of proton therapy is generally in200,000 to 300,000 RMBthe whole journey is at your own expense.

According to a recent6 million peopleLarge-scale studies have shown that during the 14 years from 2004 to 2018, the number of patients receiving proton therapy has gradually increased, and the growth rate of cancers such as head and neck tumors, central nervous system tumors, breast cancer, and lung cancer is relatively fast.In terms of overall usage, proton therapy usage over the 14-year period has gone from0.4% increased to 1.2%. The first proton therapy system in my country was introduced in 2004, which has a history of 18 years.

Chinese scientists have been committed to researching their own proton therapy system. In 2012, theAcademician Zhao Zhentang, Director of Shanghai Light Source Science CenterandNing Guangyuan, President of Ruijin Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicineled the official start of research and development of the proton therapy system.

What is exciting is that in 2021, my country’s self-developed proton therapy system will be approved for marketing, and clinical trials will begin on November 30, 2021.The trial ends on June 3, 2022, during whichSuccessfully completed the treatment of 47 subjects and achieved 100% tumor control. The localization process of proton therapy can provide more patients with treatment opportunities, reduce treatment costs, and allow patients to get more benefits.

In the future, scientists will continue to explore the establishment of proton therapy technology and clinical standard operating specifications that are in line with the Chinese population, so as to realize a systematic, standardized and standardized proton therapy program for tumor treatment.

Although proton therapy is suitable for many cancer patients, it should not be blindly superstitious. Unfortunately, after suffering from cancer, it is still necessary to go to a professional hospital in time to consult a doctor for advice on choosing a treatment plan.


(1) “Precisely “Blast” Cancer Cells! Which cancer patients are suitable for proton therapy? “. Wuhan Union Hospital. 2022-04-14

(2) “Proton Therapy Technology Makes Cancer No Longer a Terminal Illness!”. Healthy Linyi. 2023-03-03

(3) “The First Domestic Proton Therapy System Will Be Officially Put into Use in the Tumor Proton Center of Ruijin Hospital”. Ruijin Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine. 2022-09-27

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