10 Things You Need to Know About Radiation Therapy for Breast Cancer

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Most of us have a general idea of what radiation is and that it’s used to treat various types of cancers. But how much do you really know about it?

Despite the fact that it’s one of the core treatments used to combat breast cancer, it tends to be less talked about than chemotherapy and mastectomies. So let’s talk about it.

The more you know about radiation, the better you’ll be able to understand what you’re in for when your doctor tells you about the treatment plan he or she is recommending for you. It will also help you make your own decision about whether or not radiation is right for you.

Below are ten things about radiation that you should know before you begin treatment.

10. What Radiation Is

Radiation therapy involves the use of high-energy rays concentrated into a thin beam to target the cancerous area. This method is generally used to kill any remaining cancer cells after a cancerous tumor has been removed via a lumpectomy or mastectomy.

9. How Radiation Works

Radiation therapy rays of energy are directed at the location of the cancer to avoid harming the rest of the body. The radiation damages the cells’ DNA, which means it won’t be able to reproduce, and the cancer will not be able to spread. Although radiation beams damage normal cells, they are generally more damaging to cancer cells because of how fast those cells divide. Cancer cells are also less organized than regular cells, disabling them from repairing the damage done by radiation as easily as normal cells can.

Click “next” below to learn more about radiation therapy.

Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?
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