No. You do not feel anything. You will lay on the treatment table as the machine moves around you. You will hear the machine move, but you will not feel the radiation whatsoever. However, the treatment table is flat and hard, and can be a little uncomfortable. Our radiation therapists will try to make you as comfortable as possible.
That is dependent upon the type of radiation treatment you choose and the type of cancer you have. For electron therapy and IMRT, your daily treatment time is about 10 minutes. CyberKnife treatments range from 30-60 minutes.
Our radiation therapists watch you the entire time of your treatment. If you have a problem, you can signal them and they will stop treatment and attend to your needs. We look at you on TV and can hear you.
The only area affected is the area that is being treated. If your head is being radiated then you could lose your hair. Otherwise, no you will not lose your hair due to radiation therapy.
Again that is dependent upon the type of treatments and cancer you have. All treatments are scheduled Monday-Friday. Most people come daily. We are closed for national holidays.
Nothing. No cutting. No pain.
Sometimes. You could have some side effects after a couple weeks. Those will be explained to you at consultation and will be monitored daily by the radiation therapists. The most common side effects are fatigue and skin irritation. We will do everything possible to eliminate or reduce these side effects. You need to follow our instructions carefully.
Yes. You are not radioactive. You can be around family, children and friends without anything to worry about.
Yes, unless you currently have a condition that keeps you from driving. We do offer a free transportation service to those in need. Please discuss this with our nursing staff.
Most of our patients are able to continue their daily life as usual. Depending on your job, you can continue to work. There are very few restrictions due to your treatment for most cancers. However, you will need to listen to your body. Fatigue can occur a few weeks into treatment. If you are undergoing chemotherapy, you will need to check with your medical oncologist as to your restrictions. Those with cancer of the head and neck experience a wider range of side effects.
That is our goal. We will work with you and give you a time that works with your schedule.
It is very important that you try to make it in for every scheduled treatment. This is important to the effectiveness of the radiation in beating your cancer. However, if you cannot come in at your scheduled time, please discuss it with our radiation therapists. They can try to move your appointment for that day. If you cannot make it at all, we will review that with your physician.
Through years of research and experience, there are ranges of doses that are recommended for each specific type of cancer. Your case is thoroughly reviewed by the radiation oncologist, medical physicist and dosimitrist. It is also checked throughout the course of your treatments. A customized dose and treatment area will be prescribed based on the cancer diagnosis, the cell type, location and stage of your cancer.
Most types of radiation therapy slowly kill the cancer cells by changing their cellular structure. The radiation will continue to work for several months following your last treatment. Your physicians will order testing when it is appropriate. Some patients feel an immediate effect after treatment as the cancer can respond by shrinking.
You may take a multivitamin. Your physician will need an up-to-date list of all medications that are prescribed to you, especially any over the counter or herbal medicines. If another physician prescribes something while under our care, you need to tell our nurses.
The area that is being treated with radiation should not be exposed to much direct sunlight. Sunscreen may not be applied on the treated area while undergoing treatment. This area of your skin will always be extra sensitive to the sun. After your course of radiation, you need to be diligent about always wearing sunscreen.
Your skin in the treatment area may become reddened or irritated around the later part of your second week of treatment. You will be given a skin cream to apply daily after treatment.
You will see your doctor and your nurse once a week during your treatments. You will also be monitored daily by the radiation therapists who actually deliver the radiation treatments. The nurses are always available to help manage your needs and answer questions relating to your treatments. A doctor is always able to see you when you are having problems.
First Dayton Cancer Care accepts most insurance, but you need to call your insurance company to make certain that First Dayton Cancer Care is in your preferred network of providers. A medical biller from Maxx Medical will meet with you your first week of treatment to verify coverage, co-pays and deductibles that you are responsible for. A payment plan may be set up if necessary. Please notify us of any changes to your employment status, such as COBRA.
You will continue to follow up with your radiation doctor for some period of time after treatments are completed. Your specific schedule will be determined by your radiation doctor.
Survivorship support is very important us. You will be given information at the end of your treatment to help with this.
The daily treatment is quick and effortless. You will arrive at the center and check in. You will be called to the treatment area or escorted by a staff member.
It may be necessary for you to change into a gown. For most people this is not necessary. Your clothes will simply be moved aside.
You will lay down on the treatment table. The radiation therapists will set up your treatment to ensure that the radiation beams are in line.
The therapist will leave the room. You will be monitored via camera the entire time. The radiation treatment will begin. You will not feel anything. You will hear the machine and you will see it move around you.
Once treatment is over, the therapists will enter the treatment room to assist you. You are free to go about your daily living.
During the course of your daily treatments, the physicians and physicist will be checking your progress and making any necessary changes to your treatment plan. You will not notice any of these changes. Your therapists may take a film once a week to check your progress.
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