You are scheduled for a certain number of treatments based on your specific diagnosis and treatment plan. Treatments typically are given Monday through Friday. Each session takes about 10 to 15 minutes. All treatment appointments are scheduled in advance, so there is no need to call each day to confirm your appointment.
In order for radiation therapy to be effective, it is critical that you receive all prescribed treatments. If you miss an appointment, it will be added to the end of your treatment course.
On the day of your treatments, we encourage you to wear comfortable clothing. Each treatment session is similar to having an X-ray exam. The treatment itself is painless.
When you enter the treatment room, our radiation therapist will help you onto the treatment table. Once you’re positioned, the radiation therapist exits the treatment room and your session begins. You’re asked to lie still and breathe normally during the treatment. No sedation is required.
The linear accelerator moves around your body without touching you, delivering radiation precisely to your tumor. Throughout the session, you can communicate with the radiation therapist via a two-way intercom system, and the therapist monitors you throughout treatment using video cameras. You can pause the session at any time by waving or speaking to the treatment team.
You should be able to leave as soon as treatment sessions are complete. Most patients return to normal activities and routines following their treatment. Common side effects may include skin irritation at the treatment site and fatigue.