Radiation therapy damages cancer cells and gives us one of our strongest weapons in the fight against cancer. At Lafayette Radiation Oncology, our physicians integrate the latest research with innovative technology and highly precise techniques in radiation delivery to improve patient care and treatment outcomes. They are part of a multidisciplinary team of cancer experts who work together to develop the most effective treatment plan based on your individual needs. Our physicians deliver conscientious and compassionate care to our patients while supporting patients’ families.
Faith Hope and Love is a Franciscan St. Elizabeth Health facility staffed by Lafayette Radiation Oncology physicians, part of Unity Healthcare.
To schedule an appointment, please call 765.447.7460.
For your convenience, we are in the office Monday through Friday 7:30 am – 5 pm
If you have a medical issue or concern after hours and you’re an established Unity Healthcare patient, call your physician for further direction. All others, visit Unity Immediate Care Center or seek emergency medical assistance as needed at a local hospital.
1425 Unity Place
Lafayette, IN 47905
Radiation therapy is one of the most common treatments for cancer. Radiation therapy uses high-energy particles/X-rays or waves to make small breaks in the DNA inside cells. These breaks keep cancer cells from growing and dividing, causing them to die. There are various ways to deliver radiation, but at Faith Hope and Love Cancer Center, we perform External Beam Radiation Therapy (EBRT) using a Linear Accelerator.
IMRT (Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy)
IMRT is an advanced mode of high-precision radiotherapy that uses computer-driven Linear Accelerators to deliver precise radiation doses to a malignant tumor. IMRT allows the radiation dose to conform more precisely to the shape of the tumor by modulating the intensity of the radiation beam in multiple small volumes; thereby minimizing the dose to adjacent organs and structures.
At Faith Hope and Love, we perform IMRT on prostate, head and neck tumors, as well as on other tumors deemed appropriate by the Radiation Oncologist.
IGRT/CBCT (Image-Guided Radiation Therapy/Cone Beam Computed Tomography)
IGRT and CBCT use imaging during radiation therapy to improve the precision and accuracy of treatment delivery. IGRT pinpoints the exact location of the tumor and allows for adjustments to be made before each treatment is delivered.
3-D Conformal Radiation Treatments
This type of radiation therapy is performed using a 3-dimensional treatment plan that shapes the radiation beams to match the shape of the tumor. It focuses precisely on the tumor, while avoiding the healthy surrounding tissue, thus minimizing long term side effects.
IORT (Intraoperative Radiation Therapy) for Early-stage Breast Cancer
IORT delivers a concentrated single dose of high-energy radiation to a tumor or affected area during surgery while adjacent healthy tissue is protected by special shields. At Unity Healthcare, this treatment is performed for some breast cancer patients and can kill microscopic disease and reduce radiation treatment times. Not all breast cancer patients are candidates for this type of therapy.
SRS (Stereotactic RadioSurgery)
SRS is a non-surgical radiation therapy used to treat functional abnormalities and small tumors of the brain. It can deliver precisely-targeted radiation in one high-dose treatment. Because SRS delivers high daily doses of radiation, the patient must be securely immobilized so that the radiation will be accurately delivered, thus minimizing radiation dose to normal and adjacent structures.At Faith Hope and Love, it is used on specific malignant brain tumors. The goal is to minimize the radiation dose to the tissues adjacent to the tumor.
SBRT (Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy)
SBRT is also a treatment that is delivered in high doses, but an entire therapy consists of one to five treatments. SBRT may be delivered to the brain or anywhere in the body. Solitary peripheral lung cancers and small liver lesions are examples of cancers that may benefit from this type of therapy modality. Because SBRT delivers high daily doses of radiation, the patient must be securely immobilized so that the radiation will be accurately delivered, thus minimizing radiation dose to normal and adjacent structures.
About Radiation Therapy
Radiation therapy uses beams of energy to damage the DNA of tumor cells so they stop growing and spreading. Radiation may be used as the only cancer treatment, with chemotherapy, or before or after surgery to shrink tumor cells. Radiation therapy is a localized treatment. Adjacent normal cells can also be affected by radiation, but most recover and go back to working the way they should. Our goal with each patient’s radiation plan is to minimize the radiation dose to these normal cells.
Because radiation is localized (and not systemic), side effects affect only the body site or area that is being treated. Each patient is assessed and monitored throughout the entire course of treatment to manage side effects. Most side effects can be easily treated with medication. At the completion of treatment, the short term side effects generally get better within 4 to 6 weeks.
The consultation is your first appointment. You will meet with the Radiation Oncologist to discuss treatment options, benefits, and potential risks of radiation therapy. You may want to prepare a list of questions to ask your doctor. At this appointment the doctor will determine if you are a candidate for radiation therapy.
Treatment Planning CT Scan
Most patients are required to have a treatment planning CT Scan. This scan is very different from a diagnostic CT Scan in that the patient is scanned in the exact body position that each radiation treatment will be administered. The CT Scan is sent (via an interface) to the treatment planning computer at Faith Hope and Love Cancer Center, and your doctor will use it to develop a specific treatment plan that is right for you.
This is the final phase before treatment. At this time, all planning and preparation has been completed and approved by the Radiation Oncologist. “Simulation” is a dry run of an actual treatment. While the patient is on the treatment table, the Radiation Therapists will take several electronic images so that the Radiation Oncologist can compare these images to the treatment plan and to affirm that the radiation beam will effectively treat the primary tumor volume. When the Radiation Oncologist is satisfied with the images, you will be given an appointment time for your first treatment. Often, the first treatment delivery is completed immediately following the simulation.
Each treatment plan is patient specific and each treatment delivery is based on this specific plan. Depending on the type of cancer you have will determine how many treatments are prescribed. Many patients have chemotherapy along with radiation therapy. If this is the case for you, our office and your medical oncologist will work together to develop the optimal care plan.
These appointments allow physicians to monitor post-treatment progress. Patients may be asked to have additional blood tests, x-rays and scans. During follow-up appointments, patients should also report any unusual symptoms such as pain, swelling, appetite loss, a cough or bruises or bleeding. Follow-up visits are also a good time to learn about ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle through nutrition and exercise.
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