Flashcards in Radiotherapy Deck (15):
What is radiotherapy?
is the treatment of disease by ionising radiation.
When is radiotherapy used?
- to treat malignancies
- shrink tumour
- reduce cancer returning after surgery
- control symptoms or to reduce pain if cancer is no longer treatable
- reduce the growth of cells in graves disease
- palliative radiotherapy
What are the side effects of radiotherapy?
- tiredness (anaemia from destruction of erythrocytes)
- nausea and sickness ( especially on GI tract and brain)
- sore skin
- temporary hair loss in area
- muscle and joint pain (because of swelling of joints)
- infertility ( if on prostate or ovarian )
Why is radiotherapy used in graves disease?
- reduce activity of thyroid glands by destroying cells
- less T3/T4 release
What can ionising radiation do?
- can penetrate tissues
- alter the nuclear material ie. disrupting cell growth and reproduction
- damages cells causing apoptosis
- forms free radicals which can cause further damage to the inside of the cells
Which radiation are more likely to cause tissue or cell damage because are more effective at producing ionisation?
ALPHA and GAMMA
- they are therefore the preferred treatment in comparison to BETA radiation or NEUTRONS for treating malignancies
Which cancers is radiotherapy specifically used on ?
What are the two types of radiotherapy?
EXTERNAL - supplied from outside the body
INTERNAL - utilizing radioactive implant placed inside the body
What is hypofractionated radiotherapy and its benefits?
- increase dose of radiotherapy per fraction lower frequency of fractions. -reduction in side effects
- reduction in risk of it coming back
What is hyperfractionated radiotherapy and its benefits?
increase frequency of fractions (more than once a day)
- treatment only takes 12 days rather than 4-6 weeks
Stereotactic radiotherapy delivers treatments from many different points in the head. What does stereotactic radiotherapy treat?
- small round tumours usually found in the head
- benign conditions such as:
- pituitary adenomas
- acoustic neuromas
- growths at the base of the skull (meningiomas)
Radiosurgery is a type of stereotactic radiotherapy. What does it entail?
- patients receive one single dose of radiation
- may be used if patients cant undergo surgery
What are the side effects of radiosurgery?
- not suitable fore medium or large tumours
- damage to nerves
Proton and ion beam radiation is a new radiotherapy. What does it do ?
- uses proton beams instead of ionising radiation
- these release a burst of energy then slow down