What is Radiation Therapy?
Radiation Therapy (also known as Radiotherapy) is the use of various forms of radiation (photon, electrons, etc.) to treat tumors and a variety of medical conditions and diseases in both adults and children. Often confused with the medical specialty of Radiology which uses low energy x-rays to image patients, Radiation Therapy uses high energy x-rays to treat patients.
Born over a century ago, the field of Radiation Oncology is currently one of the 3 pillars of cancer therapy alongside surgery and chemotherapy. Currently, nearly ⅔’s of cancer patients diagnosed each year in the United States receive radiotherapy.
Radiotherapy is also commonly used in the treatment of many benign (non-cancerous) tumors and conditions in both adults and children. It is also the single most effective means of palliating cancer patients suffering from pain and other distressing symptoms when cure is no longer possible.
Interested in learning more about the History of Radiation Oncology including the discovery of x-rays and the early pioneers in the field? Click below: