Radiation Therapy for Prostate Cancer


There are two available types of therapy, external and internal. This article focuses its information on the external type of therapy of the prostate.

The external type of therapy of the prostate makes use of external beam radiation. The machine eliminates a concentrated beam of radiation that targets and kills prostate cancer cells. It is believed that having high concentrated beams of energy waves damages the DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) of the cells in the body. When the cells are destroyed, cancer cells are also damaged therefore rapid cancer cell division is disrupted beam therapy toronto.

The process of this therapy makes use of a linear accelerator that is placed one meter apart from the patient. The linear accelerator produces high-energy external radiation beams that penetrate to the tissues and deliver uniform doses deep into the areas where the cancer resides. Patients receiving external beams are considered to be non-radioactive because the energy waves comes

an outside source and is not left inside the body. Doses of external beams are given at small fractioned waves. It is usually given once a day, five days in a week for five to nine weeks range. No therapy sessions given during weekends to allow the body to recover from the effects of the therapy.

External radiation therapy have available subtypes which includes, standard external beam radiation therapy (EBRT), three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3DCRT) and Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT). All of the subtypes are similar to each other; they all produce high energy intensity beams. The difference of each type is based on the regulation, direction, side effects and accuracy of high energy beams produced. Standard external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) has limited beam directions; it has vertical and horizontal linear beam directions leaving other areas of the body vulnerable to receive radiation.

As an effect, this procedure produces a number of side effects. 3DCRT on the other hand is a procedure that makes use of computer-imaging software that guides the area of target. This procedure has different angles of direction causing a more confined and accurate area of target therefore causing lesser side effects. IMRT is similar to 3DCRT but a more precise and advance type.

The side effects acquired when having radiation therapy include, urinary frequency accompanied by dysuria (painful urination), Hematuria (blood in the urine), bowel discomforts; diarrhea, rectal bleeding, pain and sexual impairments (erectile dysfunction).

Radiation therapy is the common type of treatment used when treating prostate cancer. Doctors and patients can choose among any of the available options. Having any therapy treatment is always accompanied by a number of side effects therefore doctors should provide their patients complete information with regards to its expected side effects. This therapy aims to achieve eradication of prostate cancer.

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