Radiotherapy: what to expect

Treatment is different for everyone - how and when it happens, and the effects it can have. 

Your doctor and the team involved in your care will create a care plan for you before your treatment starts. They will talk you through what to expect based on your treatment plan and your health.

There are a number of things that will need to happen to create your treatment plan - these include meeting with the radiation oncologist, CT scans, treatment simulation, treatment site marking.

CT scans and treatment simulation session to help us create an accurate and precise treatment delivery plan.

The treatment simulation involves you lying in a simulation machine in the same position as you would in the treatment machine. Once you are in position, we can identify if any supports are needed to help you maintain a comfortable position and to stay still during treatment. Also, any special shields or shapers needed to help with the direction of the beams will also be identified.

During treatment the radiation beams must be aimed precisely at the same area each and every time, according to the treatment plan. To ensure this happens, the radiation therapist will mark on your skin the target area with either temporary paint or small tattoos.

The information on what to expect varies from patient to patient - your team will talk you through any questions or  concerns; anything you want to know more about; the more you ask, the more you can learn about what to expect.