The doctor will put the radiation source on or near the problem site in your body. This gives you higher doses in a shorter time. The sources are in the form of wires, seeds, or rods. This method is for cancers of the:
The time it takes varies. Your cancer type and method of internal RT play a role.
Will It Hurt?
Anesthesia prevents pain. You may be sore after. It depends on where the material was placed.
Average Hospital Stay
You will stay in the hospital until the doctor takes the implant out. If you had a permanent one, you will stay until the radioactivity is lower. The doctor takes out high-dose ones in minutes. Low-dose ones may stay in for a few days. Permanent ones lose their effect within a few days.
You will return to a room while the implant is in place. You will follow these safety steps:
Children under 18 years old and pregnant women may not be able to visit you. They may visit after the doctor takes the implant out. If you can have visitors, they will need to sit at least 6 feet from the bed. Visits will be 10-30 minutes. Staff may place a shield beside the bed to protect others.
Limited contact with the staff:
The staff will be there for you at all times. They may speak to you from the doorway. They may also come and go quickly so they are not around the radiation for too long.
Your doctor will want to see you at least once a week. You may have routine blood tests to check on your progress.
After RT is done, you will have fixed visits. The doctor will check your healing and make sure the RT worked. Care may also mean more testing, medicines, or rehabilitation.
Call Your Doctor
Call your doctor if you have:
Signs of infection, such as fever and chills
Diarrhea or loss of hunger
Weight loss without a known cause
Pain or burning with urination
New or unusual swelling or lumps
Nausea and vomiting
Pain that doesn't go away with the medicines you were given
Changes in skin, such as bruises, rashes, discharge, or bleeding
Cough, problems breathing, or chest pain
New or unexpected symptoms
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
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