Radiation Therapy may be used to destroy cancerous cells in specific areas. In radiation therapy, radiation oncologists precisely calculate the amount of radiation used and the locations where it will be delivered — making sure that patients are not exposed to any unnecessary or dangerous radiation levels.
Radiation therapy options at Methodist Sugar Land Hospital include:
(Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy) IMRT is considered the ideal form of treatment by many radiologists because of its accuracy and power. Advantages of IMRT include minimized side effects, minimized radiation to healthy tissue and higher radiation dosage to cancerous cells.
(High Dose Rate Brachytherapy) This technique allows for shorter treatment time and less radiation exposure to healthy tissue by placing a temporary radioactive source in or near the area to be treated. This ensures that large doses of radiation are delivered in short periods of time — five days versus the traditional six weeks — to cancerous tissue while minimizing exposure to healthy tissue. Primary areas treated are breast and gynecological malignancies.
In general, radiation therapy side effects can include hair loss, skin pain, fatigue, changes in taste, loss of appetite and nausea. These side effects depend on the part of the body receiving radiation, the
dose of radiation and the frequency of therapy.