How To Prepare For Radiation Therapy?

How To Prepare For Radiation Therapy?

13 January, 2017

Radiation therapy is one of the safest ways to cure cancer. It is often used for the treatment of prostate, breast, and cervical cancer. It uses concentrated radiations to kill malignant cells which cause cancer. There are various therapies that are administered under radiation oncology depending upon the type, stage, and aggressiveness of the disease. It is often used in combination with other cancer curative therapies, such as chemotherapy, or surgical procedures like tumor removal, etc. There are chances that healthy cells can also get damaged during therapy, but they recover back in no time.

It is often used to uproot the disease in its earliest stage. In case of tumor removal through surgery, radiation therapy can help reduce the size of a tumor. Furthermore, it is also used to kill any cancer cells once the surgical procedure is done. In case of prostate cancer, a type of radiation oncology is done that implants radiation seeds inside or around the tumors that emit radiations over a period of time.

One of the most crucial things in order to receive radiation therapy is to prepare for the therapy. For this, patients must have information regarding the procedure and any possible situations that may arise after it. Some of the most crucial bits of information for cancer patients include:

Preparing Your Body for Radiation Stimulation

The radiation team, through a planned procedure, works with you in order to come to a conclusion about the position that would be suitable for your treatment. This is extremely important as you must lie still during the entire procedure. To assist with this, the team places comfortable restraints and cushions to keep you in a still position.

Once that is done, your body is marked either with a temporary marker or small, indicative permanent tattoos for areas that would receive radiation treatment soon.

Scans

In order to know the areas that need to be radiated through the procedure, the team would conduct a number of scans. They would not only help identify the areas, but also help determine the intensity of the radiation and the dosage of the treatment. This would mainly depend upon the type and stage of cancer the patient has.

Following these two steps, the patient is ready for the administration of radiation therapy. Once it is done, a follow up procedure and check up is also needed. This would be determined by the doctor who is in charge of dealing with the particular case. A follow up would also involve multiple scans and tests in order to keep a check on the progress and possible side effects of the therapy.

For the radiation therapy to be executed safely and flawlessly, the experience of the radiation oncologist is also very crucial, as indicated in the research conducted by Boero et al (2016). Hence, it is also crucial that the medical team and doctors working on each radiation therapy case are also experienced enough to know how to deal with the procedure and attend to any complications that may arise during their course.

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