A MAN from Wimborne who has been told he will “probably die” from surgery being suggested to remove a serious neck tumour has been refused a new form of radiotherapy treatment.

John Wright, 48, requested that he be considered for proton beam therapy at a specialist centre in Newport, south Wales but was refused with doctors saying that it was not the best form of treatment for his form of tumour.

A team of specialists based at both Poole and Bournemouth hospitals have been managing his care and have said that surgery is the most common method of dealing with the growth.

Mr Wright, who beat cancer before more than 10 years ago, was diagnosed with a carotid body tumour in August after suffering from bouts of dizziness.

Since then, a lump in his neck has swollen in size and the illness’ symptoms have forced him to take a break from his work as a legal advisor.

“I just want to be treated fairly,” he said. “They have just made an arbitrary decision because they know how much proton beam therapy costs and that they will have to pay for it.

“The hospitals have told me that the main way of dealing with this form of tumour is to have surgery carried out.

“But, because of how close it is to the neck arteries, my GP has said that I will probably die due to bleeding during surgery.”

Proton beam therapy is a form of radiotherapy but is recognised as being less damaging to tissue.

The NHS is in the process of developing two proton beam therapy centres but neither are operational meaning that patients’ treatment at a private clinic in Newport.

However, it says that in many cases other methods of treatment are more effective.

A spokesman for NHS England said: “The NHS does fund proton beam therapy where top doctors say it is advantageous, but it is not always clinically appropriate or a better treatment than other options already available on the NHS.

“Together with the Department of Health and Social Care we are also now funding the development of two new world class proton beam therapy centres in Manchester which will open in 2018 and in London in 2020 to treat an estimated 1,500 cancer patients a year.”

Cancer Research UK has estimated that one in 100 cancer sufferers would be suitable for the treatment.