Radiation Therapy


This uses radiation to kill cancer cells. It can shrink tumors. There are several types of radiation therapy. Let's learn about the main ones.

External-beam Radiation Therapy

The first is called "external beam" radiation therapy. It uses a beam of high-energy X-rays, gamma rays, protons or electrons. The beam passes through your skin. It goes into the cancer cells. It damages and kills the cancer cells. The beam is very precise. So it can hit a small target and won't damage nearby healthy tissue.

Internal Radiation Therapy

The next type is called "internal radiation" therapy. With this method, the radiation source is put into your body. We can use radioactive pellets or wires. Or, we can use some other device. The doctor puts one or more of these into your body through a needle or catheter. Radiation is slowly released into nearby cancer cells.

Systemic Radiation Therapy

The third type is called "systemic radiation therapy." With it, you swallow a radioactive liquid. Or, it's injected into your body. It travels through your body, destroying cancer cells. While the radiation is inside you, you'll take special care so you don't expose others. Soon, it will be flushed out in your pee.


For more information about radiation therapy, talk to your doctor.