What will it be like during a treatment?
A: When youíre
getting a treatment, you wonít feel anything. It
is just like having an x-ray taken. You will hear
a loud humming noise, but that is only the machine
doing its job. You must remember to hold very
still and let the technologists (tech) do all the
work. Once you are in position on the table, the
techs will leave the room and start the treatment.
They will be able to see you on a camera at all
times. The techs will be in and out of the room
during your treatment. They will help you off the
table when the treatment is complete, and youíll
be ready to go home. The total time you should
expect to spend in the treatment room is 10-15
Q: Is this going to hurt?
A: No, it is
just like having an x-ray taken. You wonít feel
Q: How long is it going to take?
treatment will take about 10-15 minutes from
set-up to finish, but the actual radiation is for
only a few minutes.
Is anyone in the room with me when I get my
A: No. We
canít stay in the room with you, but we will be
watching you on camera. If you need anything, we
will attend to it.
When will I know if the treatments are
treatments continue to work for up to two weeks
after you are finished. The radiation oncologist
may order an x-ray or test during your treatment
to check progress, or they may wait until a few
weeks after you are finished. This is only if your
referring physician has not done so. It is like a
prescription of medicine. You must take it all
before we can see how it has helped.
Q: What do the x-rays show?
A: The films
that we take during treatments are for
localization only, not for diagnostic evaluation.
If you do have diagnostic x-rays at the hospital,
the radiologist will review the films and send a
report to the radiation oncologist. After that, he
will review them with you.
Q: Will the treatments make me sick?
not. Radiation treatments may make you sick if we
are treating an area that includes all or even
part of your stomach.
Q: Will I lose my hair?
A: You will
only lose your hair in the area that we are
Can my family come in the treatment room
A: No. During
your treatment, we prefer that they wait in the
waiting room. There are other patients in the
office, and we want to give everyone as much
privacy as possible.
Q: Why do I have to come everyday?
radiation works better if itís given day after
day. That way the cancer cells donít have time to
heal between treatments. You will be treated 5
days/week (Monday- Friday). The weekend allows
your body time to rest and recuperate. The center
is closed for major holidays. You will be informed
a few days in advance about any closings.
Q: What if the weather is bad?
A: If the
weather is too bad for you to come, please call
and let us know. We donít want you to come out on
a bad day. It would be much better to miss a few
days than to risk an injury that would cause you
to miss many days.
Q: How often will I see the doctor?
A: Once a
week. Of course, if you are experiencing problems
or side effects, you should tell the nurse or
techs so that the doctor will know what you are
What will happen at the end of my treatment?
A: The doctor
will talk with you about what to expect. He will
also set-up a follow-up appointment. At that time,
he may schedule a test or x-ray to check the
status of your cancer if your referring physician
(the doctor that sent you here) has not yet done
Regarding my bill, do you accept assignment?
However, Medicare only pays 80% of assignment, and
you are responsible for the other 20%. Also, we
are required by law to bill you for your co-pay
Please keep the following in mind:
Be mindful of your treatment time. We try to run
on schedule. A patient is scheduled every fifteen
minutes, so if emergencies arise we may get
behind. Also, we go by treatment time and not by
the time that you arrive. If you have waited more
than 15 minutes past your scheduled treatment
time, please let the receptionist know.
If you have blood work in another office, please
bring us a copy of the results. This will save you
from having your blood checked twice. For those
patients receiving both chemotherapy and radiation
therapy, your blood levels may get low, and you
will have to rest from radiation treatment. Also,
if your other doctors have ordered any tests or
x-rays, please let us know so that we can get the
If you have an appointment with another doctor,
please let the techs know the day before, and we
can reschedule your treatment time so that you can
make both appointments.
If you are having any problems, please tell the
techs or ask to speak to one of the nurses, and
they will let the doctor know so that we can give
you the care you need.