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Intraoperative Radiation: What to Expect

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Intraoperative radiation is given in the operating room during lumpectomy, while you are under anesthesia.

After the cancer has been removed, radiation can be delivered within the operating room to the area where the cancer used to be. Various types and techniques of radiation can be utilized for this kind of treatment while protecting the underlying tissue.

For safety reasons, all the doctors and nurses must leave the room while intraoperative radiation is delivered. But a special patient monitoring station is located outside the operating room so your doctors watch and check on you the whole time.

The procedure takes about 2 minutes. After the radiation is given, the surgery site will be stitched up and you will be taken out of surgery.

Another technique is known as high-dose-rate remote afterloading intraoperative radiation. This procedure uses a small tube, which is placed in the area where the cancer was. The tube is connected to a computerized radiation machine, which delivers a high dose of radiation through the tube. The procedure takes about 5 to 10 minutes.

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