During your treatment, you may hear various medical terminology used when describing radiation therapy. Below is a list of common terms that may be related to your care. We hope these descriptions help, but if you have any questions understanding your treatment, please let us know. 

A tissue-equivalent material used to change the surface distribution of a radiation beam. 

The use of radioactive sources placed directly into a tumor bearing area to generate local regions of high intensity radiation. 

The use of drugs or medications to directly attack cancer at the cellular level by disrupting the cell metabolic or reproductive cycle. 

The schedule of fractions of treatment as it is delivered. This is usually expressed as the number of fractions or treatment sessions delivered over a specific period of time. 

Any technique of radiation treatment that delivers more than one treatment session per day. Hyperfractionation is normally done twice and usually is separated by a period of 4 to 6 hours. 

The use of radiation therapy in an attempt to decrease symptoms such as pain, bleeding or other dysfunctions. This sometimes results in the prolongation of life, but the main goal is to improve the quality of life. 

Portal Films 
X-rays taken during the delivery of radiation treatment utilizing the treatment beam of the machine. Portal films demonstrate the exact shape, size and area covered by each individual treatment beam during an actual treatment. 

Treatment planning 
The cognitive process carried out by the physician to determine all of the parameters in a given course of radiation therapy.