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Radiation Therapy and Mesothelioma

If you have been recently diagnosed with mesothelioma, you are most likely considering a variety of treatment options. In addition to surgery and chemotherapy, your doctor likely mentioned radiation therapy as a possible treatment. Radiation is a popular choice when treating cancer as it is less invasive than chemotherapy and surgery. But every case is different and your doctor will let you know what type of treatment route is best for you. Radiation therapy is also often used in conjunction with surgery, chemotherapy or both.

Radiation therapy for cancer uses a type of radiation called “ionizing radiation” which can kill existing cancer cells and slow or stop the growth of new cancer cells. Usually radiation therapy is prescribed to mesothelioma patients as a palliative treatment as mesothelioma is a type of cancer that currently has no cure. A palliative treatment is used to provide relief from pain and other symptoms of the cancer. Treatments can also slow down the progression of mesothelioma.

Types of Radiation Therapy for Mesothelioma

There are three main types of radiation therapy used for mesothelioma treatment. The type of radiation that is used generally depends on the type of mesothelioma, the stage of the disease, and what other treatment options may be available. These types of radiation therapy are:

  • External beam radiotherapy
  • Mesothelioma brachytherapy
  • Unsealed source radiation therapy

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