What Is External Beam Radiation Therapy
During external beam radiation therapy, a beam of radiation is directed through the skin to the cancer and the immediate surrounding area in order to destroy the main tumor and any nearby cancer cells. To minimize side effects, the treatments are typically given five days a week, Monday through Friday, for a number of weeks. This allows doctors to get enough radiation into the body to kill the cancer while giving healthy cells time each day to recover.
The radiation beam is usually generated by a machine called a linear accelerator. The linear accelerator, or linac, is capable of producing high-energy X-rays and electrons for the treatment of your cancer. Using high-tech treatment planning software, your treatment team controls the size and shape of the beam, as well as how it is directed at your body, to effectively treat your tumor while sparing the surrounding normal tissue. Several special types of external beam therapy are discussed in the next sections. These are used for specific types of cancer, and your radiation oncologist will recommend one of these treatments if he or she believes it will help you.
Three-Dimensional Conformal Radiation Therapy
What Training Has An Oncologist Had
An oncologist has completed at least 5 or 6 years of specialist training after becoming a doctor.
In Australia, most medical oncologists are fellows of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and members of the Medical Oncology Group of Australia . They have the initials FRACP after their name.
Most surgical oncologists are fellows of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons .
Most radiation oncologists are fellows of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists .
What Are The Reasons I Might Need To See An Oncologist
Different cancers affect your body in different ways. Generally speaking, you might see an oncologist if you talk to your primary care physician about a change in your body and they recommend you have some preliminary tests. You likely will be referred to an oncologist if your tests indicate you have cancer.
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How To Find The Right Medical Oncologist For You
Start by asking your primary care doctor for suggestions. Or call a trusted hospital to see what medical oncologists work there and who might be a good fit for you. Choose one who treats the type of cancer you have and who takes your insurance. You can also:
- Talk to friends or family members whoâve had the same cancer. They can tell you which doctors took care of them and what the process was like.
- Ask the medical oncologist about their experience and credentials. They can tell you exactly how many years of experience they have and if they have any advanced or specialized training. For example, if the medical oncologist is board certified in oncology, that means they passed an intense, high-level test.
- Ask how to contact them after hours. Find out if your doctor is available on weekends and holidays.
- Meet the medical oncologist and staff. You can do this either in person or over the phone. Meeting the team can give you a sense of how theyâre going to help you with your treatment. This is also a good opportunity to make sure theyâre willing and ready to answer your questions.
What Is A Tumor Board
Sometimes, a person’s cancer diagnosis is complex. In this case, the patient’s oncologist may ask a tumor board to review the case. In some cancer centers, a tumor board reviews all cancer cases.
A tumor board is a group of medical experts from all areas of cancer care who work together to decide the best treatment plan. The tumor board can include medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and surgical oncologists. Other specialists may be a part of the board as well. The members of the tumor board can provide diverse perspectives that can help you get the best care possible.
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A Day In The Life Of Dr Gary Schiller Professor Of Hematology
New therapies and technologies change the way we practice oncology, the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Oncology specialists lead these innovations in patient care, each focusing on a different area of cancer treatment: medicine , radiation, and surgery.
Each cancer-fighting treatment method requires different training, which often starts early in medical school. Gary Schiller, MD, professor of hematology-oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, says most medical students start focusing on oncology during their second years or clerkships.
“We were all drawn in by the excitement of oncology, but now as physicians who care for oncology patients, we’re defined by the tools of our trade,” says Dr. Schiller, who also directs the UCLA Hematologic Malignancy/Stem Cell Transplantation Program.
“We each use medical agents, radiation or surgery accordingly to treat our patients.”
Am I Able To Apply To Work As A Recognised Specialist In New Zealand
To apply for vocational registration in radiation oncology, you need either:
- the FRANZCR qualification in radiation oncology or
- an international postgraduate medical qualification in radiation oncology, where your combination of qualifications, training and experience will be assessed against the standard of the FRANZCR.
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Who Is An Oncologist
An oncologist is a doctor with special training in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Some oncologists specialise in a particular type of cancer treatment.
Part of a multidisciplinary team, the oncologist also supports the patient through collaboration and coordination of other specialists.
Oncologists are not only involved in clinical care, but also contribute to cancer research , health education, clinical teaching and ethics.
What Is An Oncologist’s Working Week Like
Oncology is a very clinically focused specialty, with much of the working week spent in direct patient contact in outpatient clinics, in the radiotherapy department, and on the wards. Clinical Oncologists will spend at least one session per week in the technical planning of radiotherapy for individual patients. Contributing to research through clinical trials or translational research is integral to patient management so Oncologists, and in particular Medical Oncologists, will devote some time to this during the working week.
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Role Of The Radiation Oncologist
The Radiation oncologist is responsible for preparing the treatment plan where the radiation is required. Some of the treatment methods are radioactive implantations, external beam radiotherapy, hyperthermia, and combined modality therapy such as radiotherapy with surgery, chemotherapy, or immunotherapy.
Are There Different Types Of Oncologists
Cancer is a multifaceted illness, which is why there are several different types of oncologists. Some oncologists specialize in certain treatments. Other oncologists specialize in certain kinds of cancer. Here are some examples of the different types of oncologists:
- Surgical oncologists. If your biopsy shows cancer cells, this is the healthcare provider who does the surgery to remove cancer that hasnt spread. They remove your tumor and surrounding tissues. They help you prepare for and recover from your surgery.
- Medical oncologists. These healthcare providers treat cancer using chemotherapy, hormonal therapies, immunotherapy and other targeted treatments. People often think of the medical oncologist as their primary cancer doctor. Most medical oncologists also specialize in hematology.
- Radiation oncologists. These healthcare providers use radiation therapy thats tailored to your specific cancer.
- Gynecologic oncologists. These oncologists treat gynecologic cancer such as cervical cancer, cancer of the uterus and ovarian cancer.
- Pediatric oncologists. These oncologists treat cancers that are more common in children than in adults, such as childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia, Ewing sarcoma and childhood brain tumors.
- Neurological oncologist. These oncologists treat people who have brain tumors and cancer that affects the nervous system.
Oncology Vs Radiation Oncology
I recall making a comment about gen surg in the recent past and then you instantly gave me an infarction for “intent to flame” when all I was doing was telling about my gen surg experience.
The only ppl I know who like surgery and choose to do gen surg are the ones who didn’t have high enough Step 1 scores to get into a subspecialty
In the context of this thread, you actually started more of the ad homs and, if you were not a mod, would already have an infarction against you by another Winged Scapula-esque mod.
What Qualiities Are Necessary For Being An Oncologist
Teamwork is very important for both specialities and most oncologists work as part of a tumour site-specific multidisciplinary team of specialty nurses, radiographers, physicists, surgeons and other clinicians, all of whom must integrate and communicate effectively. Good communication skills are essential to patient management and team-working. Given the accelerating rate of new drug and radiotherapy technologies, Oncologists must have a desire to develop and implement new treatments in their clinic. Above all an Oncologist must have empathy for patients facing what may be a concerning and serious diagnosis.
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How To Prepare For An Appointment
Bring any medical records you have, like copies of imaging tests . A list of all the medications you take could help, too. Some medical oncologists like it better when you bring the actual medications instead of a list. This includes any supplements, vitamins, or herbs.
It could help to bring a family member or close friend with you. Youâll get lots of information during the appointment, and they can help you by taking notes and listening, in case you forget anything. They can also provide support.
Write down as many questions as you can before your appointment. Thereâs a chance you might forget once youâre face-to-face with your oncologist. You might want to ask:
- When do I need to start treatment, and what are my treatment options?
- How long will treatment last?
- What are the risks and side effects of this treatment?
- How will treatment affect my daily life or routine?
Why Is Cancer Sometimes Called Oncology
Cancer is an ancient illness. Centuries ago, early Greek and Roman physicians studying cancerous tumors likened cancer to a crab, possibly because spreading tumors resembled legs spreading out from crab bodies. Oncology the study and treatment of cancer takes its name from the Greek word oncos, which means swelling and refers to the way Greek physicians described how tumors grew.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
You might be anxious about seeing an oncologist because youre worried you might have cancer. And if youre diagnosed with cancer, you might be frightened by the news. You might be frustrated, too, because you have questions for which there are no easy or black-and-white answers. Your oncologist understands those feelings. They know what youre going through. If you have cancer, every appointment is an opportunity to talk about your concerns and ask questions. Your oncologist is there to help you however they can.
- American Board of Radiology. Certification Requirements. Accessed 12/01/2021.
- American Cancer Society. Breast Cancer Treatment. Accessed 12/01/2021.
- American College of Oncology. Internal Medicine Sub Specialties. Oncology. Accessed 12/01/2021.
- American Society of Hematology. Resources for Medical Students and Residents. Accessed 12/01/2021.
- Holland JF, Frei E III, Kufe DW, et al. The Surgical Oncologist. Accessed 12/01/2021.
- The American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. Career Development. Accessed 12/01/2021.
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How Is Radiation Therapy Given
Radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer may be given in two different ways. External beam irradiation is the most common method. The radiation is delivered to a specific area of the body using a large machine similar to an x-ray machine. The treatment is given each day, Monday through Friday, for 1 to 8 weeks depending on the type of cancer and the reason for the treatment. The treatment may be given once a day, twice a day, or as many as three times a day for certain cancers.
The other method of delivering radiation treatment is called brachytherapy. In this method, a source of radiation in the shape of needles or seeds is implanted in the body. This treatment is often given before or after external beam irradiation as a way of increasing the radiation dose to only the tumor. Brachytherapy is often used in cervix, uterine, and prostate cancers, some head and neck cancers, and sarcomas. The implants are placed in the body while the patient is anesthetized in the operating room. Some of the implants stay in place permanently, whereas others are removed after 2 or 3 days.
When To See An Oncologist
If a person is diagnosed with cancer, or is suspected to have cancer, a GP may provide a referral to an oncologist. A biopsy will be taken and examined by a pathologist. If it is found to be cancerous, a series of diagnostic tests and scans may be done to determine the size of the cancer and to find out whether it has spread.
Oncologists work as a team to recommend a course of treatment for individual patients.
Patients can seek a second opinion from other doctors or medical teams at any time. A GP or specialist can refer patients to other specialists, and patients can request their medical history to be sent to the doctor providing the second opinion.
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Urologist Vs Radiation Oncologist Vs Medical Oncologist
- Counselor-2. Oct 21, 2012 â¢ 11:49 AM. “Of late, I have been suggesting that folks with newly-diagnosed prostate CA seek advice from three specialists first the urologist who diagnosed it, second a radiation oncologist who could extoll the virtues of his/her modality, and third, a medical oncologist who is quite familiar with prostate cancer.
Responsibilities Of The Patient And Family
To avoid delays in treatment and potential problems, the patient and family also have several responsibilities. The first is to provide the radiation oncologist with an accurate and detailed medical history, medication list, and allergy list. If the patient has received any treatments for cancer in the past, including radiation, chemotherapy, surgery, or immunotherapy, it is important to provide the radiation oncologist with the name, address, and phone number of the appropriate physician. Delays in obtaining outside records can delay the start of treatment.
The second responsibility is a commitment to the treatment plan. This includes arriving on time for appointments, not removing the marks on the skin, and reporting side effects or other problems that the patient may experience. The earlier that a new problem is identified, the sooner it can be managed and, we hope, solved. This includes problems with insurance, housing, transportation, or employment in addition to physical side effects related to the treatment. It is also important to try to follow recommendations for taking medications and nutritional supplements. Following these recommendations can help avoid a break in the treatment course, which can have a negative impact on the desired outcome.
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What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor
Coping with a diagnosis of cancer and researching the various treatment options can be a stressful experience. To assist you in this process, below is a list of questions you may want to ask your radiation oncologist if you are considering radiation therapy.
Questions to ask before treatment
- What type and stage of cancer do I have?
- What is the purpose of radiation treatment for my type of cancer?
- How will the radiation therapy be given? Will it be external beam or brachytherapy? What do the treatments feel like?
- For how many weeks will I receive radiation? How many treatments will I receive per week?
- What are the chances that radiation therapy will work?
- Can I participate in a clinical trial? If so, what is the trial testing? What are my benefits and risks?
- What is the chance that the cancer will spread or come back if I do not have radiation therapy?
- Will I need chemotherapy, surgery or other treatments? If so, in what order will I receive these treatments? How soon after radiation therapy can I start them?
- How should I prepare for this financially?
- What are some of the support groups I can turn to during treatment?
- If I have questions after I leave here, who can I call?
- Will radiation therapy affect my ability to have children?
- Do you take my insurance?
Questions to ask during Treatment
Questions to ask After Treatment Ends
United Kingdom & Ireland
In the United Kingdom, clinical oncologists, who practise radiotherapy are also fully qualified to administer chemotherapy. After completion of their basic medical degree, all oncologists must train fully in general internal medicine and pass the MRCP exam, normally 3â4 years after qualification. Following this, 5 years of Specialist Registrar training is required in all non-surgical aspects of oncology in a recognised training program. During this time, the trainee must pass the FRCR examination in order to qualify for specialist registration as a clinical oncologist. A significant proportion of trainees will extend their time to undertake an academic fellowship, MD, or PhD. Almost all consultant clinical oncologists in the UK are Fellows of the Royal College of Radiologists, the governing body of the specialty. Whilst most oncologists will treat a selection of common general oncology cases, there is increasing specialisation, with the expectation that consultants will specialise in one or two subsites.
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What Happens On A Typical Treatment Day
Each day, the patient checks in with the receptionist at the scheduled appointment time for treatment. A radiation therapist escorts the patient into the treatment room. Clothes that cover the treatment fields are removed. The patient is positioned on the treatment table in the treatment position. Sheets and blankets are available to provide privacy and comfort. The shielding block for the first treatment field is placed in the machine. The therapists confirm the position, touch up the lines that outline the field, and then leave the room. The machines are turned on for the appropriate treatment dose and time.
Once the treatment is completed, the therapists position the machine for the next treatment field, and the process is repeated until all fields have been treated. After all fields are treated and treatment is complete for the day, the patient may dress and go home.
Once a week, the radiation oncologist meets with the patient to determine how well the patient is reacting to the treatment and to provide answers to questions from the patient or family. However, if the patient develops a new problem during the week, the radiation oncologist, nurse, or another designated person is available to care for the patient.