What Happens During External Radiation Treatment for Lung Cancer
External radiation is the most common type of radiation given for lung cancer. You can get this as an outpatient in a hospital or a clinic. This type of radiation usually comes from a machine called a linear accelerator.
Before you start radiation treatments, you will have an appointment to learn exactly where on your body the radiation beam needs to be directed. The process is called simulation and may take up to two hours. Here’s what you can expect to happen during the simulation process:
On the days you have radiation treatment, here’s what you can expect:
The experience is much like that of getting an X-ray, only it lasts longer. It will take about 15 to 30 minutes for the whole process, with about one to two minutes of that actually receiving the radiation.
Many treatment plans require that you get radiation treatments every day for five days in a row for several weeks. You will not be radioactive afterward.