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Department of Radiation Oncology
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The goal of radiation therapy is to eradicate or shrink the tumor cells without damaging the surrounding tissue. Radiation therapy may be used to cure a cancer, to help keep it from spreading, or to help improve quality of life by relieving pain or other symptoms.
In addition, in the Cox Building we operate:
Radiation therapy uses high energy x-rays to kill cancer cells. The radiation sources may be external (from outside the body) and come from x-rays aimed at the cancer; or the radiation source may be internal (from inside the body) and come from radioactive implants. The goal of both external and internal radiation therapy is to kill the cancer cells while limiting the damage to healthy normal cells around the tumor. Most healthy cells that are damaged by the radiation can quickly repair themselves.
The majority of radiation oncology patients receive treatments once per day, five days per week. The radiation oncologist determines the total number of treatments. Licensed radiation therapists faithfully administer the radiation “prescription.”
Our linear accelerators vary in the energy of their beams. We take advantage of their differences by assigning patients to the treatment unit that will provide the optimal energy beam for their type and location of tumor. Special radiation technologies available within the scope of the program include:
If you have questions regarding the MGH Department of Radiation Oncology please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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