3DCRT uses computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), or a combination of PET and CT scans to create a customized radiation distribution to deliver doses of radiation that conform to the exact 3D shape and size of a tumor. This technique allows for the maximum allowable dose of radiation to the tumor while minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissue.
3D Conformal Radiation Therapy (3DCRT) is not a single procedure, but takes place over multiple sessions. These small but frequent doses of radiation allow healthy tissues surrounding a tumor to heal. The duration of an individual’s procedure depends on the amount of radiation needed, the size and location of the tumor, the type of tumor, and the patient’s health.
Your radiation oncologist first plans your entire treatment, and then works with a specialized team to ensure safe and accurate delivery of 3DCRT.
3DCRT Planning Includes:
3DCRT takes place in small, frequent doses followed by short weekend breaks. This structure allows healthy tissue surrounding the tumor to heal. The total amount of radiation required for a tumor will depend on the size and location of the tumor, type of tumor, and patient’s overall health. The less radiation required, the shorter the duration of the therapy.
What to Expect During 3DCRT Treatment:
After treatment, your radiation oncologist and radiation therapy nurse will help you prepare for any Side Effects following treatment. They are also more than happy to help with any questions or concerns.
Since 3D Conformal Radiation Therapy (3DCRT) is very precise and does not interact with much healthy tissue, some patients do not experience side effects at all. Side effects vary from person to person, and are usually related to the treatment area. At Blue Ridge Radiation Oncology, we use 3DCRT to treat Lung Cancer.
Common Side Effects of 3DCRT Treatment for Lung Cancer:
Most short-term side effects of 3DCRT can be treated with medication to improve comfort. Side effects generally go away within 4 – 6 weeks of the final treatment.