What to Expect from a North Dallas Radiation Oncology Center
People who are diagnosed with cancer may find their doctors recommending radiation as part of the treatment process. When trips to a North Dallas radiation oncology center are advised, patients may find themselves a little unsure of what to expect at first. This form of treatment is highly effective in addressing many different forms of cancer, but it’s one that not every patient is familiar with.
While the specifics of radiation treatment may vary based on the type of cancer and the technology used, patients can expect this basic process to occur if external beam radiation has been prescribed:
- Preparation – After arriving at the North Dallas radiation oncology center, patients will need to be prepared for treatment. This generally involves getting into a hospital gown and then laying down on a moveable bed. The technician will then mark the exact position where the radiation beam should be directed. Special shields may be used to help protect healthy tissue from radiation.
- Procedure – Once positioning is carefully set, a machine will focus highly targeted beams of radiation at the cancerous cells. The technician will be in a different room, but will monitor the procedure the entire time from a screen and will also have an intercom for voice communication. It is very important to not move during the actual treatment. While preparation and positioning may take a while, the treatment typically lasts for only a few minutes.
The number of visits that may be required will vary from patient to patient. In some cases, short-duration treatments may be suggested for palliative care. When radiation is being used as a curative measure, patients may find they need to report on a near-daily basis for several weeks to receive treatment. The process will be similar during each visit, but patients will likely meet with a radiation oncologist at least once a week during active treatments. The doctor will seek to gauge the effectiveness of treatments and will also want to hear about any side effects.
Radiation treatment is designed to eradicate cancerous cells from the body. The process can be a difficult and time-consuming one for patients, but it can help produce highly positive outcomes. If a North Dallas radiation oncology center has been recommended, patients can find out more about what to expect from their doctors. Treatment plans are likely to vary from patient to patient, and may differ based on the form of cancer diagnosed.