Understanding Radiation Oncology

Radiation oncology involves the use of special kinds of radiation, to safely and effectively treat cancer and other diseases. Often referred to as radiotherapy or radiation therapy, radiation oncology describes a localized and therapeutic use of radiation to preserve healthy cells and eliminate disease cells by damaging the genetic material within cancer cells and limiting their ability to duplicate.

Radiation therapy may be recommended by your physician and can be utilized in several ways. It may be used alone, or in conjunction with surgery, chemotherapy, or hormonal therapy. When used before surgery, the goal is to shrink and sterilize the disease.

When administered post-surgically, the aim is to destroy any remaining microscopically involved cells. Radiation therapy can also be used as curative treatment for those patients with inoperable disease or for those who prefer a non-invasive treatment option as an alternative to surgery.

Finally, radiation therapy can be utilized to reduce the symptoms caused by progressive disease and to improve quality of life. Each radiation treatment is brief in duration and painless and delivered in our newly renovated state of the art department.

There are many types of radiation therapy and can be delivered externally or internally. During external beam radiation therapy, your radiation oncology team will use high energy X-rays directed at the site of disease. Internal radiation therapy also called brachytherapy, involves placing temporary or permanent radioactive sources inside your body.

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