Radiation therapy involves the use of ionizing radiation in an attempt to either cure or improve the symptoms of cancer. It works by damaging the DNA of cancerous tissue leading to cellular death. To spare normal tissues (such as skin or organs, which radiation must pass through to treat the tumor), shaped radiation beams are aimed from several angles of exposure to intersect at the tumor, providing a much larger absorbed dose there than in the surrounding, healthy tissue. As with chemotherapy, different cancers respond differently to radiation therapy.
Radiation therapy is used in about half of all cases and the radiation can be from either internal sources in the form of brachytherapy or external radiation sources. The radiation is most commonly low energy x-rays for treating skin cancers while higher energy x-ray beams are used in the treatment of cancers within the body. Radiation is typically used in addition to surgery and or chemotherapy but for certain types of cancer, such as early head and neck cancer, may be used alone. For painful bone metastasis, it has been found to be effective in about 70% of people.
Cutting-edge specialty services in radiation therapy:
• Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT)
• Robotic Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT)
• Respiratory Gating
• Stereotactic Radiosurgery
• High Dose Rate(HDR) Brachytherapy
• Whole body stereo tactic Cyberknife
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