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Radiation therapy (also called radiotherapy) is a cancer treatment that uses high doses of radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. At low doses, radiation is used in x-rays to see inside your body, as with x-rays of your teeth or broken bones.
There are two main types of radiation therapy:-
External beam - It comes from a machine that aims radiation at your cancer. The machine is large and may be noisy. It does not touch you, but can move around you, sending radiation to a part of your body from many directions.
Internal beam - Internal radiation therapy is a treatment in which a source of radiation is put inside your body. The radiation source can be solid or liquid.
The type of radiation therapy that you may have depends on many factors, including:
(a)The type of cancer
(b)The size of the tumor
(c)The tumor’s location in the body
(d)How close the tumor is to normal tissues that are sensitive to radiation
(e)Your general health and medical history
(f)Whether you will have other types of cancer treatment
(g)Other factors, such as your age and other medical conditions
At high doses, radiation therapy kills cancer cells or slows their growth by damaging their DNA. Cancer cells whose DNA is damaged beyond repair stop dividing or die. When the damaged cells die, they are broken down and removed by the body. Radiation therapy does not kill cancer cells right away. It takes days or weeks of treatment before DNA is damaged enough for cancer cells to die. Then, cancer cells keep dying for weeks or months after radiation therapy ends.