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Radiation Treatments - Preparing for and Having Radiation Treatments

  • Published: 2009-01-15 (Revised/Updated 2010-06-30) : Author: Pamela I Jones
  • Synopsis: Discusses preparing for and under going radiation treatment for cancer a real life story.

Having radiation treatment is sometimes part of having cancer, which can be scary if you are not sure what to expect.

I have included an excerpt from my book, Navigating Across the Unpredictable "C", a true life story about the trials and triumphs of living with cancer which has some tips on what to expect prior to having radiation treatment.

"I didn't feel like talking much that day, but I continued a conversation with her, which was just mainly small talk.

Some days I was able to talk to people and some days it seemed no one in the waiting room felt like talking, including me. However, when we did, we talked about anything from the day's news, which was on the television in the waiting room, to which countries we came from. No one ever discussed why the persons they were waiting for was having treatment. It's funny, because while waiting sometimes I remember thinking, "Please don't let anyone ask me what Val was having treatment for." It's not something I want to discuss with people I don't know that well. Obviously, the people I talked with felt the same way.

Before the radiation could begin, the technicians and the radiologist took measurements around Val's breast where they were radiating. The technician told her that the pinpoint dots they put on her chest around the right breast were like tattoos, which could not be removed. Once done, they could then begin the treatment. The machine was similar to a giant x-ray. Val had to lie on the table while the machine was moving in all the relevant angles and beamed the rays onto the marked area.

After a couple of weeks of treatment, she was exhausted. I felt completely drained. I had been spending every day at the hospital. You would have thought I was the one having the treatments. We used to look forward to having Saturdays and Sundays off. Sometimes, we would walk around the malls after the treatments and, of course, shop. It helped to do something normal and uncomplicated. We always felt better after shopping. What woman doesn't? In fact, we were trying hard to do normal things.

We didn't always discuss the day's treatments after leaving the hospital. It was something Val knew she had to do and move on with her life. She wasn't always down or depressed. She had her good days and her bad days, but for the most part, she was always in a good mood. Our days usually consisted of going to the hospital, to the gym, to the mall, visiting places like the Science Museum, or simply just relaxing. Towards the end of the six weeks we didn't do much because Val was exhausted from going to the hospital every day.

The doctors and nurses were helpful, caring, and compassionate. We will never forget the help they gave to Val. It made it much easier for her to cope. It was hard to hold herself together. She fluctuated between crying and trying to stay strong. She had many sleepless and restless nights."

If you or anyone you know has cancer or any other type of disease, please see below my personal pearls of wisdom for better living, which are my suggestions only, and not that of any health institution. Prior to starting any medication, diet, or exercise program, you should consult with your physician beforehand.

First and foremost - Enjoy your life!

Meditate and Pray.

Eat a well balanced diet--all the nutrients the body needs.

Drink plenty of water.

Exercise--if you can't work out in a gym, try taking walks.

Get regular physical examinations.

Ask your doctor as many questions as you'd like, and if you don't understand the first time, ask them to explain again.

If you think there is something wrong with you, make an appointment to see your doctor right away.

Find a local support group to help you if you think you require support.

Reference: Pamela Jones is the author of Navigating Across the Unpredictable "C", a true story about the trials and triumphs of living with cancer. She has an online business which offers ebooks and information products with resell rights. Visit her site at and receive a free report.

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