Treatments are given on a daily basis, Monday through Friday. Treatments may range from one day to several weeks. The number of treatments depends upon the doctor's evaluation of the individual patient's condition. Every attempt will be made to schedule treatments at the same time every day and at a time that is convenient for each patient. Generally, patients can expect a 10- to 20-minute office visit each day. Actual treatment time is about five minutes, but patients are scheduled at 15-minute intervals to allow for treatment set up and clothing changes.
Because each patient is assigned a specific time for treatment, we ask that you please arrive on time for your appointments. If you arrive early, you will still be treated at the appointed time. Unfortunately, there may be some occasional unforeseen delays due to last-minute emergencies or other circumstances beyond our control. We appreciate your patience and understanding during such situations.
Medical Care, Testing and Medications
Once a week (more frequently if necessary), your radiation oncologist will examine you to follow your progress. If you experience any problems prior to your weekly visit, advise the nursing staff and they will inform the physician. Routine blood samples and verification X-rays of the area treated are taken, generally on a weekly basis. This testing is necessary to note your progress during your course of treatment. You will be notified only if there are any unusual or unexpected results.
Medications are prescribed on an individual basis. Most medications are used to control treatment related side effects. When you have questions about your medications or if you need prescription refills, please contact one of our nursing staff.
Activity and Personal Care
While you are receiving radiation therapy treatments, it is important to maintain an adequate diet and be sure you get sufficient rest. It is essential that good nutrition be maintained during the treatment process. We encourage you to continue as much of your normal activity as you feel capable of without strain. Please protect your treatment area from injury due to rubbing, pressure or irritation. Do not use electric heating pads, hot water bottles or heat lamps on these areas. Avoid excessive exposure to direct sunlight or extreme cold. Please do not use medications, mouthwashes, ointments, or make-up on the treated areas without approval from your physician. We consider any question or concern you have about your care to be very important, and we will do our best to help you during this difficult time.