Radiation oncology is a medical science that studies the effects of treatment procedures using ionizing radiation on cancer cells. Applications made in radiation oncology clinics are examined under two different groups as radiosurgery and radiotherapy. Treatment procedures in both groups are also performed using radiation.
The type of treatment plan that will be applied to the patient is determined after detailed examinations and diagnostic tests by multidisciplinary teams consisting of specialist physicians and health personnel. Up to 70% of all cancer patients will require radiotherapy at any stage of treatment. Radiotherapy can be used alone or in combination with chemotherapy (medical oncology treatment) before or after surgery.
In the radiation oncology units in Turkey, cancer treatment is performed by specialist physicians with personalized approaches. In our radiation oncology departments, image-guided volumetric arc therapy, which is a new generation beam therapy technology, is used. Treatments in our hospitals; It is carried out in a planned manner as a team with radiation oncologists and radiotherapy technicians.
What Is Radiotherapy and How Does It Work?
Radiotherapy, also known as radiation therapy among the people, is a treatment technique that has been used in cancer treatment for many years. Approximately three-quarters of all patients diagnosed with cancer receive radiotherapy at least once in any part of the treatment.
Radiation used in radiation therapy, which is an application that allows the treatment of tissues consisting of cancer cells and in some cases benign tumors with radiation beams, targets the nuclei of cancerous cells and causes damage there. Cells with damaged nuclei lose their ability to reproduce, and cancer is treated or controlled in this way. In addition to cancer cells, radiotherapy also damages healthy cells, albeit to a lesser extent. This is one of the factors that play a role in the emergence of unwanted side effects.
However, since healthy cells have more advanced repair mechanisms than cancer cells, they can reproduce and regain their former health after treatment.
In radiotherapy procedures applied in radiation oncology clinics, PET/CT method should be used both to determine the status and spread of the disease in the pre-treatment period and to investigate the success of radiotherapy during treatment. With PET/CT, a medical imaging method, metabolic changes caused by diseases are examined using radioactive components. Thanks to this imaging method, which gives very detailed information, structural and functional changes in the body are evaluated and the most appropriate treatment approach is determined.
Radiosurgery Practices in Radiation Oncology Clinics
Surgical procedures using radiation beams are called radiosurgery. With these applications, malignant tumors with a suitable structure can be removed from the body using certain techniques, just as if they were removed by a surgical operation. As in radiotherapy procedures, the aim of radiosurgery is to treat cancer.
In radiosurgery applications, state-of-the-art devices offered by developing medical technology are used. Radiosurgery can be performed by choosing the appropriate device such as CyberKnife M6, Tomotherapy, EDGE, MR-LINAC, Trilogy, TrueBeam, Gamma Knife. Radiosurgery applications using ionizing radiation include different techniques. Which technique should be applied is decided by evaluating many factors such as the patient’s condition, the location of the tumor, and the extent of its spread. The most commonly used of these techniques are as follows:
Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRC): Cancerous cells determined as targets in stereotactic radiosurgery are coordinated in three dimensions and then completely destroyed in a single session using a high-dose radiation beam. The application of the procedure accompanied by imaging methods (IGRT) increases the selectivity for the targeted tissue and minimizes the damage to healthy tissues.
Stereotactic Radiotherapy (SRT): In stereotactic radiotherapy, the target cancerous tissue is destroyed in 3-4 sessions instead of a single session, unlike SRC, by using lower radiation doses. With this method, the targeted tissue can be treated more sensitively and a high level of protection of healthy tissues can be achieved.
If you have a diagnosed oncological disease, you can apply to us and undergo a detailed examination, and you can find out at what stage your disease is by getting the necessary diagnostic tests done. As a result of the evaluation of the findings to be obtained by specialist physicians, you can determine your treatment plan and start the necessary applications in the early period, so you can defeat cancer, as many people have succeeded.