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Treatment

For your first day of treatment, you will speak with our Patient Care Liaison Radiation Therapist and Radiation Oncology Nursing staff prior to your treatment. They can answer any questions you might have regarding treatment, side-effects, caring for yourself during treatment or anything else related to your cancer journey.

 

When you arrive for your subsequent treatment appointments, please check in with our reception staff, and proceed to your treatment machine waiting area.

 

The Radiation Therapists will position you with the same equipment used for your planning scan and the part of you being treated will be exposed. They will align your tattoos or other markings to positioning lasers in the treatment room. Reproducing your planned position and remaining still during the treatment process leads to improved treatment accuracy. Staff will take X-rays or a CT equivalent image before your treatment to ensure sub-millimetre accuracy.

 

Image of an External beam radiation therapy machine 

 

Image of two clincians operating a linear accelerator machine with a patient on it. Also see is a background banner with text - Northern Sydney Cancer Centre 

 

Treatment time depends on the complexity of your radiation treatment: a typical session ranges from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. Treatment itself is painless and non-invasive. You will not see or feel anything, you will only hear the linear accelerator machine buzz as it delivers the treatment. Usually, the planned treatment is broken up into "fractions", or daily treatments.

 

Every 1-2 weeks you will have a "Treatment Review" by a member of your medical team. If you are unwell, please let our staff know. You may ask to be seen at any time by the Patient Care Liaison Radiation Therapist or Nursing staff who will contact the Radiation Oncologist as appropriate. Please do not start any new medications during the radiotherapy without discussing it with your doctor first.