Preparing for radiation therapy

The first step in your treatment journey is to develop a plan specifically for you. This may take a few hours as it always involves a meeting with your radiation oncologist and any necessary scans such as a CT scan, MRI or PET-CT. This meeting is to help your radiation oncologist clearly understand you and your case, and to give you the chance to ask any questions or discuss concerns you might have.

You’ll need to bring any doctor’s letters, test or treatment reports, radiology CD’s or films and insurance preapproval forms. Please also follow instructions around eating, drinking and taking medication beforehand.

When you come in for your first scan, with your permission, we’ll make very small permanent marks on the treatment area to help us quickly and correctly position each treatment. If necessary, you’ll also be fitted with a device that will make it easier for you to stay still during treatment.

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CT Scans

CT Scans are painless and give a very accurate picture of the where and how big your tumour is. You’ll lie as still as you can on a padded bench which slides through the machine. You’ll need to take off any clothes and jewellery from the area to be scanned. If you’re feeling nervous about your CT scan, let your radiographer know - they can help. In most cases your CT scan will be done here at ARO.

Your treatment plan

After your pre-treatment meeting, your team works together to develop the ideal plan. This involves a highly sophisticated planning software system and review process, which means your treatment will be delivered as safely and effectively as possible. We also take into account the type and position of your tumour, any other treatment you’ve had or is planned, and your general health and fitness.