Brain cancer patient Ashya begins proton therapy

Brain cancer patient Ashya begins proton therapy

Brain cancer patient Ashya King is set to undergo his last dose of proton therapy after his condition improved, the clinic treating him has said.

The five-year-old’s parents took him to Prague in a desperate bid to get him the specialist treatment.

Iva Tatounova, director of the Proton Therapy Centre (PTC) in the Czech capital, said: "He has been very well and we are expecting him today for his last day of proton therapy.

“I don’t know if you remember the pictures when he was transported here – just lying on his bed in the ambulance.

“Now he can sit on his own, he can play with the toys and his motorics improved dramatically. He can also react to his surroundings.”

Ms Tatounova told the BBC that Ashya’s family are planning to leave at the weekend for Spain, where he will continue receiving treatment.

The youngster’s parents, Brett and Naghmeh King, sparked an international police hunt when they removed their son from Southampton General Hospital on August 28 without medical consent.

They faced a protracted legal battle to get him to the PTC, with a High Court judge only approving the move after they had been released from police custody in Spain.

Earlier this week his family released a video showing them taking Ashya outside and to a children’s park. On completing treatment he will have had 30 irradiation sessions to fight his rare brain tumour.

The PTC has said proton therapy is more effective than radiotherapy as it limits the collateral damage of radiation to other vital organs, such as the heart and liver in Ashya’s case. This would lead to less severe long-term side-effects including heart and breathing problems.

The therapy is not available for him on the NHS, although the health service has since agreed to fund Ashya’s treatment.

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