Radiation therapy is one of the three main ways that we treat childhood cancer (surgery, chemotherapy and radiation). It uses beams of high energy to treat cancer by damaging fast growing cells which gets rid of their ability to grow. Radiation can also affect normal cells, but normal cells are better able to repair themselves. Advances in radiation therapy have ensured that radiation therapy can be tailored to an individual child’s needs while also being delivered effectively and safely.
There are different types of pediatric conditions that may be treated with radiation therapy as a part of the treatment plan. Some types of childhood cancers that are often treated with radiation include:
Your child might also receive chemotherapy and radiation therapy together on a fixed schedule where both treatments are given at the same time. In those cases, your child’s oncology team will help coordinate the therapies.