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HEALTHCARE TECHNOLOGY LISA SOMBART – PRINCIPAL, ST. LOUIS TEAM LEADER, MAZZETTI, USA


Proton therapy facilities furthercancertreatment


Since its inception in 1946, proton therapy is generally recognized by international healthcare professionals as a superior treatment, compared to that of traditional radiation treatments.


Clinic entrance.


Not only is proton therapy yielding successful outcomes among cancer patients, it is doing so with reduced collateral tissue damage and improved patient experience and recovery. However, the cost of the equipment and associated specialised facilities has limited its use - and the associated potential to change the face of radiation treatment - until recently.


The proton difference Proton therapy, used to treat lung, brain, head and neck, gastrointestinal, and gynecologic cancers, and other difficult- to-treat tumours, has resulted in a much


Examination room.


higher success rate in cancer treatment relevant to the collateral damage experienced by surrounding tissues. Proton beams are significantly different


than photon beams and their use is expanding as precision improves and clinical studies demonstrate value for other cancers. A photon beam carries energy through


the tissue with the highest dosage near the delivery point and dissipates as it passes through tissue to the tumour location until it exits the body. The beam loses energy as it passes through the healthy tissue and must be adjusted to deliver the proper dose to the tumour,


Lisa Sombart


Lisa Sombart, PE, LEED AP BD+C, is Principal and St. Louis team leader for Mazzetti. She was Principal-in Charge & Project Manager on both Barnes Jewish Hospital proton therapy


projects in St. Louis. Lisa is a mechanical engineer with over 30 years’ experience in project management, energy analysis, controls and automation design, and critical facilities


commissioning and validation. Her experience spans a diverse range of building types, including energy and utility analysis, healthcare, research and development laboratories, vivarium facilities, and new construction and renovation projects. An expert in


building controls and automation, Lisa has a comprehensive understanding of building operations and maintenance needs, supporting her efforts in evaluating building energy consumption and utility costs.


IFHE DIGEST 2021


resulting in excess radiation exposure to the healthy tissue anterior to the tumour. With proton therapy, a machine called


a synchrotron or cyclotron speeds up protons creating high energy. This energy makes the proton beam increase with depth, rise at the tumour location to deliver the needed dose, and then immediately fall off after passing through the tumour. This is known as the Bragg Peak. The beam can be set to arrive and


deliver the maximum dose at the full dimension of the tumour. The main benefit is the ability to target the tumour directly, with a focused beam, that has much lower impact on healthy tissues that are anterior or posterior to the tumour. Beam technology advancements


have offered treatment of the precise dimensions of the tumour and minimised the side effects of radiation treatment.


Proton therapy clinic design Proton therapy clinics include many of the same spaces as other healthcare clinics including lobby and reception, waiting room, exam rooms, physician/nurse workroom, clean supply/soiled utility, and engineer’s office for monitoring the equipment and radiation levels. Each treatment room has a control


room for operating the system and monitoring the patient. The imaging


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