Radiation Therapy

Many types of cancer respond well to the use of radiation therapy, which uses radiation beams to target the tumor. Our cancer experts plan radiation therapy using advanced calculation methods and technology, so they can deliver your individualized plan of care safe and effectively.

As your partner in health, our caring team will keep you informed and supported throughout this journey.

How radiation therapy works

Radiation therapy uses high-energy particles or waves, such as X-rays, electron beams, or protons, to destroy or damage cancer cells. It is a highly targeted approach to cancer treatment, which pinpoints the tumor, minimizing the impact of radiation on surrounding organs and tissue, so the rest of your body has minimal radiation exposure.

Radiation is delivered through one or more of these approaches, and it is dependent on the location, size and type of cancer:

  • External beam radiation: High-energy rays, shaped to match the tumor, target the tumor directly.
  • Brachytherapy: We place radioactive material directly on or near the tumor.
  • Systemic radiation: We deliver radiation through the bloodstream directly to the cancer, using pills or an IV line placed in a vein.

Your doctor will discuss the treatment goals with you before starting radiation therapy. We may use this treatment therapy to:

  • Remove or shrink tumors before surgery
  • Lower the risk of cancer returning after chemotherapy or surgery
  • Ease symptoms, reduce pain or improve function by shrinking tumors that are pressing into nearby organs

Ensuring you feel support in beginning radiation therapy is important to our team. You can count on us to answer questions, provide an explanation for your treatment plan and guide you each step of the way.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Treatment regimen: You’ll typically have a series of appointments, then take a break to allow the radiation to work in your body.
  • Comfortable facilities: The radiation therapy location offers convenient outpatient care in a calm, comfortable environment. It is our goal for you to feel the complete support of our team while undergoing care.

Help for radiation therapy side effects

Radiation therapy can be effective in fighting cancer, but it can take a physical and emotional toll. You might experience side effects such as:

  • Fatigue
  • Hair loss
  • Skin changes
  • Other symptoms, depending on what part of your body is receiving treatment

Our experienced specialists help you prevent and manage the side effects of your treatment. We provide physical, emotional and spiritual support throughout your healing process, whether we’re prescribing medication or praying with you during your appointments.

We may recommend radiation therapy along with other cancer treatments. Your care plan may also include chemotherapy, immunotherapy or surgery.

Know that we won’t just fight your cancer, we will be with you on each round of this journey.

For more information, call Adventist Health Castle’s oncology clinic (808) 263-5022.