What Is Radiation Treatment

How do I prepare for radiation therapy?

Preparing for radiation therapyFind out about quitting.

If you smoke, try to quit or cut down before radiation therapy starts as smoking may make the treatment less effective and side effects worse.

Explore ways to relax.

Organise help at home.

Arrange transport.

Mention metal implants.

Ask about travel assistance.

Discuss your concerns.

Consider fertility..

Can you wear a bra during radiation?

Opt for soft bras with wide straps: if you are undergoing upper body radiation, you may find your bras to be uncomfortable during radiation. Bras with wide straps and no underwire won’t dig into or rub against your skin and breathable fabrics will allow for optimal comfort.

Does radiation weaken your immune system?

Certain cancer treatments (such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, stem cell or bone marrow transplant, or steroids) or the cancer itself can suppress or weaken the immune system. These treatments can lower the number of white blood cells (WBCs) and other immune system cells.

What is the success rate of radiation therapy?

When it comes to early stages of disease, patients very frequently do well with either brachytherapy or external beam radiation. Success rates of around 90% or higher can be achieved with either approach.

What can you not do during radiation treatment?

Foods to avoid or reduce during radiation therapy include sodium (salt), added sugars, solid (saturated) fats, and an excess of alcohol. Some salt is needed in all diets. Your doctor or dietitian can recommend how much salt you should consume based on your medical history.

What does radiation feel like?

The severity of the symptoms and illness depends upon the type and amount of radiation, length of exposure and the part of the body exposed. Initial symptoms include nausea, vomiting, headache and diarrhoea. These symptoms can start within minutes or days after the exposure.

What is radiation therapy and how does it work?

What is radiation therapy? Radiation therapy uses high-energy particles or waves, such as x-rays, gamma rays, electron beams, or protons, to destroy or damage cancer cells. Your cells normally grow and divide to form new cells. But cancer cells grow and divide faster than most normal cells.

What can I expect after my first radiation treatment?

Most people start to feel tired after a few weeks of radiation therapy. This happens because radiation treatments destroy some healthy cells as well as the cancer cells. Fatigue usually gets worse as treatment goes on. Stress from being sick and daily trips for treatment can make fatigue worse.

What foods taste good after radiation?

Many foods, including meat and poultry, taste better if they are served cold or at room temperature instead of hot. Eggs often taste good when the taste for meat is lost. Fresh fruits and vegetables, pasta dishes, and milk products are often well tolerated. Fruit sorbet, sherbet, and fruit smoothies usually taste good.

Is radiation treatment painful?

You may need anesthesia to block the awareness of pain while the radioactive sources are placed in the body. Most people feel little to no discomfort during this treatment. But some may experience weakness or nausea from the anesthesia. You will need to take precautions to protect others from radiation exposure.

How long is a session of radiation therapy?

In most instances, treatments are usually spread out over several weeks to allow your healthy cells to recover in between radiation therapy sessions. Expect each treatment session to last approximately 10 to 30 minutes.

Can I drive after radiotherapy?

Will I be able to drive after my radiotherapy treatment? Almost all patients are able to drive while receiving radiotherapy treatment. However, with some types of cancer, driving may NOT be recommended due to fatigue or strong pain medication. Your physician will be able to address your specific case.

What is the most common acute side effect of radiation treatment?

Fatigue is the most common acute side effect of radiation therapy. It is believed to be caused by the tremendous amount of energy that is used by the body to heal itself in response to radiation therapy. Most people begin to feel fatigued about 2 weeks after radiation treatments begin.

How can you protect yourself from radiation?

Staying inside will reduce your exposure to radiation.Close windows and doors.Take a shower or wipe exposed parts of your body with a damp cloth.Drink bottled water and eat food in sealed containers.

What are the side effects of radiation therapy?

Common Side Effects from Radiation TherapyHair loss.Appetite changes.Mouth and throat changes.Trouble swallowing.Swelling.Coughing.Diarrhea.Nausea and vomiting.More items…

Does radiation shorten your life?

According to the study’s authors, findings showed that: chemotherapy, radiation therapy and other cancer treatments cause aging at a genetic and cellular level, prompting DNA to start unraveling and cells to die off sooner than normal.

How do you know if radiation therapy is working?

There are a number of ways your care team can determine if radiation is working for you. These can include: Imaging Tests: Many patients will have radiology studies (CT scans, MRI scans, PET scans) during or after treatment to see if/how the tumor has responded (gotten smaller, stayed the same, or grown).