• I would like to hear about your experiences with radiation therapy.

    Asked by vinniesmom on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    I would like to hear about your experiences with radiation therapy.

    I will be starting radiation soon. What happens during the treatment time as far as mood, physical wellbeing...what effect does it have on you?

    6 Answers from the Community

    6 answers
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      The actual treatment doesn't really have any effect on you. You lie on a table for about 15 minutes and the machines and techs do everything else.

      over 5 years ago
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar

      The most common side effect will be fatigue. I've heard that if you're able, you can exercise and this helps a lot with the fatigue.

      over 5 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      If your talking about what happens during the 20 or 30 seconds that the radiation is actually being done, Not much happens. You may hear a loud "CLICK" when the machine first starts, followed by a humming noise. Then you will hear when it stops. I just about jumped off the table the first time I heard that CLICK! That was 24 years ago and technology not as good then as it is now, so the machines are quieter now. My last radiation 4 years ago was similar, not as loud.

      As TC said the physical well being will start to drop off as time goes on during treatment. In a few weeks I was getting fatigued and wanted a nap in the afternoon. If you read through some of the many threads on the site about radiation you will get lots of experiences.
      Here is a link to a search for Radiation done in the experiences tab.

      over 5 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      As other have said the treatment itself doesn't take too long. I was able to get in and out in under two hours. Most of the time I spent, was waiting to be called. The first few session may take a bit longer because they need to get you just so once you are on the table, but after about 4-5 sessions working with the same team, you and they so intuitively know how to position your body.

      I received hydrophor to help prevent burning and heal the skin - but I still developed blisters by the end. I was given instructions and a kit to help treat them. The fatigue was the worst. I felt like a zombie by the time my treatment was over. - so I slept a lot and was very cranky. Not everyone gets fatigue, there was one women who left the center just as I got there (around 8:45 AM) and went to work every day.

      A few days before your treatment starts you will probably get some tattoos. They are very small, dots, which help make sure that you are positioned correctly before they zap you.

      over 5 years ago
    • BENDINTHEROAD's Avatar

      I had radiation for the same kind of cancer. Once a day during the week and off on weekends for 5 weeks. The radiation itself is a piece of cake. Nothing to it. Then I was fine for about 2 hours afterward. And then I was nauseated and tired the rest of the day. Sometimes weekends were great - sometimes it didn't make any difference that I wasn't getting radiation. Use a very good moisturizer daily and a gentle soap like Dove. I remember reading up on some foods that cause distress - dairy might be one - but check to be sure. There are some good recipe books for meals that are easier on you. Prepare to be tired some days and fine others. I walked the 1/2 mile to treatment and back and that seemed to help. The only lasting effect I had was bone pain in the area that is just now starting to go away after 2 1/2 years. Good luck. You will get through this.

      over 5 years ago
    • Noeybluess' Avatar

      After my mom got a hysterectomy, she received 25 radiation treatments. I remember the treatments did take long but my mom's side effect included fatigue and a bit of tenderness. Other than that, she was fine.

      over 5 years ago

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