A cancer diagnosis is a life-altering event that can affect the patient and also their family members. That’s why oncologists and the medical fraternity are constantly trying to find new techniques and programs that can treat cancer patients in a better way. This approach is also necessary because modern medical treatments can ensure a higher survival rate and fewer side effects for cancer patients.
While advanced modalities like radiation oncology treatment are relatively new for the Indian population, they can rehabilitate patients and enable them to get back to society quickly. However, it’s quite normal to feel anxious or concerned about a new type of cancer treatment.
Hence, it would be helpful to know more about radiation oncology so you can feel more prepared and comfortable. And this blog can provide you with all the information about the best cancer treatment in Jaipur.
What is Radiation therapy?
Nowadays, cancer is a common problem and can affect people of any age group. It’s a progressive condition started by the cell mutation, growth and accumulation in a particular body part. These malignant accumulations gradually replace all the healthy cells and can lead to severe organ damage.
Radiation oncology is the subspecialty of oncology that uses high-intensity radiation to treat cancer by targeting the genetic material controlling cell growth and division. It not only kills the existing cancer cells but also prevents cancer from recurring again.
In radiation therapy, the best oncologist in Jaipur uses irradiation or x-rays to destroy as many cancerous cells as possible. Some healthy cells may also get destroyed during radiation therapy, but they can overcome the damage with time and guidance. It can either be used as a primary treatment or in combination with any other treatment.
What are the types of radiation therapy?
Also known as particle or proton beam therapy, radiation therapy involves high ionizing radiation from x-rays, gamma rays or fast-moving tiny particles. Depending upon whether the treatment is given from inside the patient’s body or outside, radiation therapy is classified into two types, known as internal therapy and external therapy. But in some cases, both therapies are to perform consecutively for better outcomes.
External beam radiation therapy
External therapy is performed using special equipment to deliver a particular amount of radiation over the affected area. In this treatment, radiologists direct the radiation from outside the body by aiming at a precise point.
Internal Radiation Therapy
Also known as brachytherapy radiation, this treatment is performed to surgically place the radioactive material inside the patient’s body and close to the tumour. It targets the cancerous cells directly and given along with chemotherapy and pre or post-surgery.
Who is on the radiation therapy team?
In radiation oncology, a team of highly trained medical professionals work together to provide cancer patients with the best possible care and outcomes. This team may include:
A radiation oncologist
specializes in performing radiation therapy to treat cancer patients. They plan and execute the whole treatment while working closely with other team members to ensure fewer side effects and better results.
Radiation oncology nurse.
A radiation oncology nurse specializes in providing care and support for cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy. They can help you by:
- Answering questions about treatments
- Monitoring the vitals and health during treatment
- Managing side effects of treatment
Medical radiation physicist.
A medical radiation physicist helps design the treatment plans as they are experts in managing radiation equipment and calculating radiation doses.
Radiation therapy technologist.
They are medical professionals who operate the radiation machines and administer scheduled treatments on cancer patients.
Other health care professionals.
Team members from other specialities, such as rehabilitation therapists or physiotherapists, also provide supportive care for physical, emotional, and social needs during radiation therapy.
When is radiation therapy performed?
The best cancer treatment in Jaipur recommends radiation therapy at different stages of cancer treatment for various reasons. These reasons are:
- As a primary treatment for cancer
- To shrink a cancerous tumour before surgery, also known as neoadjuvant therapy
- To stop the growth of any remaining cancer cells after surgery, also known as adjuvant therapy
- In conjunction with other treatments, such as chemotherapy, to improve the outcome
- As a Palliative treatment for advanced cancer and to alleviate symptoms
What are the Side effects?
Radiation therapy can also affect healthy cells along with cancerous cells and cause either short-term or long-term side effects. However, the types and severity of these side effects depend on the patient’s health, history and cancer types.
Short-term side effects of radiation treatment are:
- Lethargy or fatigue
- Skin irritation
- Swelling and blisters
- Excess melanin
- Nausea, Vomiting, and Diarrhoea
- Low white blood cells or platelets
Long-term side effects of radiation treatment can include:
- Stiffening and restricted movement due to tissue scarring and requires physiotherapy after the radiation therapy to help loosen movement.
- Skin effects, such as a spidery red or purple appearance, caused by dilated capillary blood vessels.
These long-term side effects of radiation therapy occur rarely. The possibility of short-term side effects depends on the patient’s overall health, cancer type and treatment type. So if you have questions about radiation oncology treatment in Jaipur,
consult our expert oncologists and radiologists.