A Complete Listing of Types of Radiation Therapy Offered at the Department of Radiation Oncology

Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)
A type of conformal radiation which shapes the radiation beam to approximately the shape of the tumor. IMRT enables a more precise conformal radiation dose distribution to the target area by allowing the physician to control the intensity of the radiation beam within a given area.

Pencil Beam Proton Therapy
A beam delivery technique that uses the proton beam and allows a "sweep" of protons across the treatment area maintaining conformality, the absence of an exit dose and reduction to dose to normal tissues.

Proton Beam Therapy
A type of radiation beam that  limits the dose to the targeted area, thus sparing healthy tissues. Proton beam can be combined with conventional photon treatments.

Stereotactic Radiation Surgery (SRS)
High precision delivery of a single, high dose radiation treatment to a brain or spine tumor while sparing normal surrounding tissue. Special immobilization, imaging techniques, and equipment are used for this highly conformal treatment.

Stereotactic Radiation Therapy (SRT)
A high precision technique using a special head frame to immobilize and position patients during treatment delivery of certain brain tumors. Unlike SRS, SRT is delivered daily over several weeks.

Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT)
High precision delivery of high dose radiation over 2-5 treatments while sparing normal adjacent tissue. It is typically used for small lung and liver tumors. SBRT involves special patient immobilization and imaging techniques.

High Dose Rate Brachytherapy (HDR)
Procedure where doctors place a very high energy radiation source inside your body near the tumor site for a brief period of time. Healthy exposure to normal surrounding tissue can be minimized.

Intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT)
Delivers a large, precise dose of radiation directly into the tumor bed during surgery.

Low Dose Rate Brachytherapy (LDR)
Permanent implantation of tiny radioactive seeds into the prostate to deliver a high dose of radiation while minimizing dose to surrounding tissue.

Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT)
Pre-treatment imaging to verify patient position, alignment and target. Imaging systems for IGRT are integrated into all treatment machines and include cone beam computed tomography (CBCT), 2D kV or MV.

Partial Breast Irradiation (PBI)
Breast sparing procedure that delivers external beam radiation twice a day for 1 week or once a day for 2 weeks following lumpectomy surgery. This technique offers a significant time saver compared to the whole breast irradiation protocol which requires five to seven weeks of radiation therapy. Treatment with this technique includes a critical selection process by the treatment team.

4-D Computed Tomography (CT) Scan
Adds another dimension (time) to the traditional CT scan used to plan radiation treatment. This method allows radiation therapists to precisely target therapy to moving organs such as the lungs.

Respiratory Gating
A technique that synchronizes radiation to a tumor’s movement, sparing healthy tissue by stopping or "gating" the beam when the tumor moves out of treatment range.

Surface Imaging
A special 3D imaging technique used to verify patient alignment before treatment, as well as track positioning in real time during treatment. This technology uses cameras that detect the patient's skin surface and computes it into a 3D image. It is often used to track deep inspiration breath holds during certain breast cancer treatments.

Total Body Irradiation (TBI)
A form of radiotherapy used primarily as part of the preparative regimen for haematopoietic stem cell (or bone marrow) transplantation. As the name implies, TBI involves irradiation of the entire body, though in modern practice the lungs are often partially shielded to lower the risk of radiation-induced lung injury.