Patient Information

Radiation Oncology

Your First Visit

New patients will need to complete forms and answer questions about their health, current illness and family history. Patients will also need to bring a list of current medications including vitamins, over-the-counter medications, herbal products, and home remedies, including dosage and how often they are taken. The nurse will provide educational materials and answer general questions. A radiation oncologist, who is a doctor that treats cancers with radiation, will examine you. The doctor will discuss treatment options with you.

Treatment Planning/Simulation

Simulation is the planning of a patient’s treatment site or sites. It is done with a special CAT scan, body measurements and markings on the skin where the treatments will be given. Your doctor and a radiation therapist will explain what they are doing. The treatment planning is usually done on your second visit and takes from 30 to 90 minutes.

Between this visit and your first treatment, your doctor will complete the treatment plan with other experts based on the simulation.

The physician then decides:

  • How much radiation is needed
  • How it will be delivered
  • How many treatments you should have

Treatment Visits

Please check in with the service coordinator at the front desk each day that you arrive for treatment. The first appointment takes 20 to 30 minutes. The length of time for other visits varies depending upon whether the patient has x-rays, has blood work, or meets with the physician, dietitian, or social worker.

The therapist will schedule your daily treatments. We will try to accommodate your preferred time as best as we can. Most often we schedule once a day at the same time Monday through Friday for the course of your treatment. If you need to change the time, let the therapist know at least one to two days in advance.

We ask that patients arrive on time as delays affect other patients’ treatments. We will do our best to remain on time. Please check at the desk if you have been waiting for more than 15 minutes after your scheduled time. If you are not able to come for your treatment, please call before your appointment time and speak with your therapist.