Like anything unfamiliar, your first experience with radiotherapy is likely to be the most daunting. Each session will take between 10 – 20 minutes for the radiation therapists to position you on the treatment couch and the radiation dose to be delivered.
The radiation therapists will leave the room and go to the control room adjacent where they can monitor you closely on closed circuit TV and audio setup. During your treatment the radiation therapists will move both the treatment machine and couch to precise pre- determined planned orientations that best target the exact area of your body needing treatment.
The machine will make a noise during treatment that is like a buzzing, whirring sound.
Everybody's case is slightly different; by referring to the on line information booklets below this should help you prepare and understand the different treatment requirements and likely side-effects for patients depending on what part of the body requires radiotherapy treatment. All of our information booklets are produced by staff at Adelaide Radiotherapy Centre. Every effort is made to ensure that the information included in them is accurate and complete and we hope that it will add to any professional advice you receive. All our booklets are evidence based and are regularly reviewed and updated.
Radiotherapy Information Booklets for Patients
- Brain Cancer
- Breast Cancer
- Bowel Cancer (including Cancer of the Anus)
- Gastric (Stomach) Cancer
- Gynaecological Cancer
- Head and Neck Cancer
- Dietary advice for poor appetite
- Lung Cancer
- Prostate Cancer Brachytherapy Patient Information
- Prostate Cancer External Beam Patient Information
- Radiotherapy Information Booklet
- National Safety and Quality health Care Standards - ARC’s Commitment
- Adelaide Radiotherapy Centre - Privacy and Health Information
- ARC - Calvary Central Districts Information Booklet
- Patient Safety and Quality - It's Ok to Ask
- Radioiodine Therapy for Thyroid Cancer Information Booklet
- Radioiodine Therapy for Thyrotoxicosis Information Booklet
Most treatments take place daily (Monday to Friday) over a period of six to eight weeks. The radiation is divided into multiple smaller doses, referred to as "fractions", over this time.
The rationale for fractionation or daily dose delivery of a prescribed radiation dose is two-fold.
- Firstly, it is done to maximise the potent effect of radiation on cancer cells i.e. killing cancer cells, and
- Secondly, to allow regeneration and repair of healthy tissues surrounding the cancer.
- The treatment itself is PAINLESS, just like having an x-ray taken.
- We encourage you to bring along a family member or a friend. They may be present in the treatment room upon request but must leave when any of the machines are switched on.
- Appointment time requests are taken at the initial appointment in order to minimise interruption to other commitments. We have a dedicated bookings person who books appointments for you, and we do our best to manage special requests.