Radiation therapy damages cells by destroying the genetic material that controls how cells grow and divide. While both healthy and cancerous cells are damaged by radiation therapy, the goal of radiation therapy is to destroy as few normal, healthy cells as possible.
The term “radiation therapy” most often refers to external beam radiation therapy. High-energy beams come from a machine that aims the beams at a precise point on your body. During a different type of radiation treatment called brachytherapy, radiation is placed inside your body.
Willmar Regional Cancer Center uses state-of-the-art linear accelerator, advanced imaging approaches, and high-speed computer-based systems – to deliver powerful doses of radiation directly to the tumor with incredible precision. Our radiation team works together to offer the highest level of safety during every step of your treatment.
Side effects of radiation therapy depend on which part of your body is being exposed to radiation and how much radiation is used. Advances in the precision of radiation therapy has lessened the risk of complications, still you may experience side effects. Most side effects are temporary, can be controlled and generally disappear over time once treatment has ended.
If radiation is appropriate for you, our radiation oncologist will provide education on the different types of radiation treatment options.