What is the success rate of Radiation Therapy?

 Radiation therapy is more widely accepted today than ever due to its increasing success rates among breast cancer survivors. This therapy is also known as brachytherapy. 

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Whether it's the external beam radiation or if it's concerned with the internal beam radiation, the radiation therapy uses both! 


In this article you will briefly learn about radiation therapy and whether it's the right choice to make or not. 


What is radiation therapy?

Radiation therapy is a kind of therapy where the doctors make high-level protons, x-rays, and other strong particles that kill the cancer cells from the breast area. The high energy outcomes used during the Radiation therapy kills the overall DNA in the respective cancer cells. It then further reduces its functionality to multiply or reproduce itself. Ultimately, it puts it in a halt state completely stopping its growth further. 


Radiation therapy generally affects the healthy cells present in your body. But it isn't dangerous or harmful at all. To make sure that the Radiation therapy isn't too strong for your body cells, the doctors use the minimum effective dose of radiation. These specialists target only the area where cancer cells are rooted deeply or where there is a possibility of its development. He uses Radiation therapy to assassinate it from its place.  A person usually recovers from this damage in the span of a few days. 


The treatment is highly effective to treat either the specific areas of the breast having the cancer cells or treating the entire breast. This way it works well to minimize its damage to the healthy cells of the body. 


Need of the radiation therapy

Radiation therapy is needed when the doctors are required to remove the cancerous tumors. Radiation therapy is generally used by breast cancer doctors once the surgery is done. 


So, the entire motive of using strong Radiation therapy after your surgery is to remove every cancerous cell or tumor from your breast. Radiation therapy ensures that the cancer cells have been killed thoroughly from your body and then the chances of its reoccurrence automatically diminish.


The second case in which Radiation therapy is highly effective is when the breast cancer survivor patient has metastatic breast cancer. In such a condition, the cancer cells get scattered to all other parts of the body leading to multiple ill symptoms. Using radiation therapy, such side effects or negative symptoms on your body can be calmed down and reduced to a great extent. 


Risks associated with the radiation therapy

Radiation therapy comes with multiple risks. One of such risks is a skin color change. It can further lead to the following risks -

  • Irritation in your skin
  • Pain in your armpit area
  • Discoloration
  • Sunburn
  • Swelling in the breast affected area
  • Yellowish peeled off the skin
  • Sensitive to touch
  • Fatigue


What is the success rate of radiation therapy?

The success rate of Radiation therapy has been quite impressive. People generally opt for Radiation therapy following the usual surgery to get rid of the breast cancer from the roots. The overall success rate of Radiation therapy is between 80% to 85%. Among the people who have taken this therapy, only 5 to 10% were found at risk of getting this disease again. Rest were cured fully without facing any reiteration period of this breast cancer illness. 


In comparison, the success rate of the normal treatment isn't more than 60% to 70%. Moreover, the recurrence rate of breast cancer again sometime in the future among the breast cancer survivors not going for Radiation therapy is almost 20% to 40% overall. 


Different types of radiation therapy

There are different types of radiation therapy. Understand all such types from the beneath section -


  1. Internal beam radiation or brachytherapy

Under Brachytherapy or Internal beam radiation therapy, the doctors generate the radiation beam from inside of the body of a breast cancer patient. It is well known to deliver the radiation particles precisely. The overall treatment time taken by it is a short period only. It has got the least side effects on your body. 


  1. Interstitial brachytherapy

In this kind of therapy, for putting across the radioactive substance onto the cavity area of your body, a catheter or a needle-shaped instrument is being used. It can be a natural one or the one generated during the surgery. It is placed inside the breast of breast cancer survivors. 


  1. External beam radiation

It is one of the most commonly used kinds of therapies. The external beam radiation makes use of the machines. It is utilized in a manner where the radioactive substances are being focussed on the areas affected by the breast cancer cells. It needs 5 to 6 days of apportionment in a week for almost 6 to seven weeks to complete the entire treatment. 


  1. High dose rate

Here doctors use the substances producing a high dose of radiation. They put the radioactive material inside the body for almost 10 to 20 minutes inside the body of a patient before removing the tumor.


  1. Intracavitary brachytherapy

In this kind of therapy, for putting across the radioactive substance into your body, a tube or cylinder is being used. It is further placed on the tumor. 


  1. Low dose rate

Under this therapy, doctors use substances that produce a low dose of radiation. It is done for 1 to seven days. 


Key Takeaways

Radiation treatment overall is considered to be a safe treatment for breast cancer survivors. It helps a lot in lowering down the growth of breast cancer cells. People suffering from breast cancer require to go through radiation therapy as this is the common thing they are suggested by the doctors although based on the individual case, it might vary. Radiation therapy is considered to be the best alternative for curing yourself sooner than expected. It might take few weeks to complete this therapy. Doctors might also use other therapies like chemotherapy and surgery parallel to this. Overall, you can go for it, after taking proper consultation from the doctors. 


References 

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/radiation-therapy-for-breast-cancer#success-rate


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