About Radiation Treatment
Washington Cancer Institute has the busiest radiation oncology department in Washington, D.C. We treat more than 1,000 patients each year with radiation therapy. Each patient receives the expertise and compassion of our renowned radiation oncology team.
Radiation treatment for cancer
Radiation treatment is one of the primary treatments for many cancers and is prescribed for more than half of cancer patients. Sometimes, cancer patients receive radiation treatment along with other treatments such as surgery and/or chemotherapy. In other cases, radiation is the only therapy needed.
Types of radiation include X-rays, electrons and gamma rays to destroy cells that divide and spread quickly. Since cancer cells divide and spread more quickly than healthy cells, radiation is effective at destroying cancer cells and shrinking tumors. Even when healthy cells are affected by radiation, they can recover.
There are two general forms of radiation therapy:
- External beam therapy – This form of radiation targets radiation beams at your tumor from outside your body, using special machines.
- Brachytherapy – This radiation destroys cancer cells from inside your body. You may have a small radioisotope container or wire temporarily inserted in the tumor. It is removed once treatment is finished.
Advanced radiation treatment in Washington, D.C.
At the Cancer Institute, we use the most advanced tools to deliver radiation, including the region's most advanced Total Skin Electron Irradiation (TSEI) program, a specialized treatment for Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma or mycosis fungoides.
The specific type of radiation treatment you need often depends on where the cancer is located. Your team of radiation oncology experts at the Cancer Institute will evaluate your case and develop a treatment plan that is most effective for you. We will also help you manage the possible side effects of radiation treatment.
Learn more about types of radiation treatment at the Cancer Institute, as well as our treatment approach for different types of cancer.
For more information or appointments, please call 202-877-DOCS (3627).
Where to go from here?Inside About Radiation Treatment: Side Effects of Radiation Therapy
Inside About Radiation Treatment: Radiation Oncology FAQs
Next Topic: Our Radiation Oncology Team
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