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Radiología en la Clínica de Oncología Astorga Medellín
What is radiotherapy?

Radiation is a form of invisible energy capable of killing malignant cells. Thanks to its ability to destroy tumors, it can be used as a single treatment or combined with chemotherapy and surgery.

Radiation therapy is given in two ways: external and internal. Some patients require both treatments, in this case we will talk about external radiotherapy.

Radiotherapy consists of 3 stages
1. Simulation

It is a procedure in the tomograph in which the area of the tumor is delimited, leaving marks on the skin, these cannot be erased to later continue providing the radiotherapy.

preparation for simulation
  • The doctor orders a SIMPLE CT or CONTRASTED CT. To carry out any of these, you must take into account the following recommendations:

  • Arrive 20 minutes before the assigned time for your simulation appointment.

  • If possible, attend with a companion and that both have time available, since the procedure can take between 2 and 4 hours.

  • On the day of the appointment you must bring the imaging studies that have been taken previously.

  • If you present any symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, muscle pain, generalized pain in the body or if you present any special condition such as claustrophobia, allergy to contrast medium, involuntary movements, psychiatric history, among others, notify prior to the procedure.

  • Do not apply any cosmetic product on the skin such as creams, oils or powders. You should also remove metal objects.

  • If you have recent tattoos, please inform at the time of appointment confirmation.

  • During this procedure you will not feel any pain.

If the TAC is contrasted, you must take into account
  • Bring the creatinine result no older than one month.

  • Present yourself with a minimum of 6 hours of fasting.

  • If you need to take medication, you can do it with the minimum amount of water necessary.

  • On the day of the procedure, you must bring a 600 ml bottle of non-carbonated water to drink after the scan.

  • Sign the informed consent before the procedure.

2. Planning

It is the information obtained from the images of the tomograph, passed to the planning system where the doctor chooses the best way to irradiate the tumor and distribute the irradiation to healthy organs. Once this plan is approved, the start of radiotherapy is scheduled.

3. Start of treatment

Treatment begins with prior verification and approval from the radiotherapist.

Recommendations to attend the sessions
of radiotherapy:
  • Show up 20 minutes before the assigned time.

  • Advertise in admissions.

  • Patients with reduced mobility, cognitive conditions, adults over 70 years of age, must attend with an adult companion.

  • Your daily bath should be with lukewarm water, mild and neutral soap.

  • The area of the irradiated skin must be dried delicately and do not use cloths with alcohol.

  • Do not apply any kind of cream, lotion, or powder before receiving radiation therapy; After receiving it, the skin should be moisturized with non-oily hand cream.

  • Avoid exposing irradiated skin to direct sunlight and, if you receive sun on any part of the body, use sunscreen with a 50% UV filter and screen.

  • Protect the scalp from direct sun, wind and/or cold with scarves, hats, caps and/or wigs.

  • Comb the hair gently, use salt-free shampoo. 

  • Avoid using a blow dryer or hair straighteners.

  • Do not shave the treated area with a manual machine,  always use an electric machine. 

Other recommendations to keep in mind:
  • The best way to avoid fatigue is to get enough rest, eat healthy, have the support of your family and friends. Energy levels return approximately 6 weeks after finishing treatment.

  • If you have abdominal discomfort, try soft drinks and foods such as broths, juices, and easy-to-digest soft foods such as purees, jellies, and compotes.

  • Eat in small amounts, but more often, avoid eating foods with strong odors, greasy or highly seasoned.

  • Do not take medications or home remedies without consulting a specialist.

  • In each radiotherapy session, bring a 600 ml bottle of still water.

Radioterapia Clínica de Oncología Astorga
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