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Frequently Asked Questions: Radiation Therapy
Will I feel any pain during treatment?
No, radiation is similar to having an x-ray taken. There is no pain or any sensation involved.
Will I become radioactive?
No, just like taking an x-ray, once the radiation is turned off, radiation does not stay in your body. Therefore, it is safe to be around family and friends while you are undergoing your treatments.
Can I move around when the radiation is on?
Remaining as still as possible is important when the radiation is on. Relax and breathe normally. If you need to cough, don’t be polite and cover up. Cough straight up or down, depending on your position and you will naturally relax back into the correct position.
Will I be alone when the treatment is being delivered?
Yes, you will be alone in the treatment room once you have been placed into position.  However, the treatment room is equipped with cameras and an intercom system. The radiation therapists will be able to see and hear you at all times. If you require assistance for any reason, feel free to call out and the staff will assist you as needed.
Will getting a tattoo hurt?
You will feel a slight pin prick as a fine needle is used to superficially place the tattoos. Remember to relax and communicate with the CT staff of any concerns.
Are there any side effects from my radiation treatments?
There are common side effects that are associated with radiation therapy. However, these side effects vary depending on the area being treated, the prescribed radiation dose and the length of the overall treatment. Your Radiation Oncologist and Therapists will discuss any possible side effects and provide methods to manage these side effects.  In addition, staff will monitor you throughout your treatment and you will have a weekly visit with your Radiation Oncologist. 

For more information about possible side effects, please visit the Canadian Cancer Society website.

Southlake Regional Health Centre
596 Davis Drive, Newmarket, Ontario   L3Y 2P9
Tel: 905-895-4521   |   TTY: 905-952-3062
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