Radiation therapy uses high doses of radiation to shrink tumors and kill
cancer cells. There are two main types of radiation therapy, external
beam and internal, and whether one or both is in your treatment plan depends
on many factors, including cancer type, tumor size, where the tumor is
in your body, the tumor’s proximity to normal tissues that are sensitive
to radiation, your overall health and medical history, any other types
of cancer treatment you may have, your age and other medical conditions.
External Beam Radiation Therapy comes from a machine that is typically large, which aims radiation directly
at your cancer. The machine doesn’t touch you but can move around
you and send radiation from many directions to the part of your body with
cancer cells. External Beam Radiation Therapy is delivered through BRG’s
Internal Radiation Therapy uses solid or liquid radiation that is put in or near the tumor in your body.
How does radiation work against cancer?
High doses of radiation damage cancer cells’ DNA, killing them or
slowing their growth so they will stop dividing or die. Damaged cells
that die then break down and are removed by the body. Radiation can take
days or weeks to damage DNA enough for cancer cells to die. After therapy
ends, cancer cells keep dying for weeks or months.
How is radiation administered?
Radiation may be administered through a high-tech laser-like machine,
or through an IV.