Ever wondered what happens in the radio therapy room? Are you looking at radiation and chemotherapy for a brain tumour? Here’s a terrific video taken by my husband of me getting set up for a treatment, featuring a couple of the terrific radiation technicians I see every day. Excellent people, doing excellent difficult work, making me feel like much more than just another patient, every day.
This was taken four weeks into six weeks of radiation therapy, paired with daily chemotherapy, which started a month after my awake craniotomy. I started feeling the expected side effects of radiation therapy around week three, combined with the side effects of the steroid medication that keeps my brain from swelling due to the radiation. After this video, the technicians and my husband will exit the room, an X-Ray will be taken of my head to ensure accurate alignment, then about two minutes of radiation is applied to four spots around my head. The idea is to have the radiation enter through the healthy brain tissue in a diffuse manner, then focus at the point of the tumour cells that remain after surgery. Think like a prism focuses light. You can see where the beams enter, mainly on the left/rear of my head, by the balding patches!
I feel nothing during the actual treatment, and get sleepy only a few hours later. The two areas I’ve not really had any side effects at all are immune system and gastro/gut effects, I thank my nutrition and gut health advisors for that, and credit my sticking to a strong keto diet for energy and help with immune, gut and brain fog help! I’m looking at five more days of treatment now, then looking forward to a few weeks break and recovery and weaning off of the steroid medication (which is hateful!!!). On the upside, I expect some nice high blood ketone measurements as I hopefully shed the weight gained!