Chemotherapy vs. Radiation for Cancer Treatment

Chemotherapy vs. Radiation for Cancer Treatment

by Crystal (SU)

If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, there are different treatment options to consider. Of course, choosing the right one is the key to a swift and effective recovery.

However, the ideal treatment method for you may vary. It’ll depend on your type of cancer, the grade or stage at which it has progressed, and your overall health before undergoing treatment.

Following an initial consultation, exams, and/or various tests to arrive at an accurate diagnosis and analysis of your specific cancer, your doctor will provide you with a personalized plan to treat your cancer.

Two of the most common cancer treatments are chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Both are designed to destroy cancer cells, but they go about it in different ways – and with different effects on your body.

What’s the Difference Between Radiation Therapy and Chemotherapy?

Here’s what you need to know about each:

Chemotherapy uses special cytotoxic chemicals – delivered intravenously through an IV or injection, or taken orally – that are devised to target and kill cancer cells that divide rapidly. Cyto- means cell, and -toxic means poisonous.

However, these drugs work throughout your body, not just the area affected by a cancerous tumor. Consequently, they can affect other cells that naturally divide rapidly, which means chemotherapy has side effects – such as hair loss and digestive issues – during treatment.

Radiation therapy, on the other hand, uses advanced technology to destroy cancer cells with concentrated beams of radiation. Instead of affecting healthy cells throughout your whole body, radiation attempts to target only those areas of your body affected by the cancer.

Unfortunately, however, conventional radiation therapy not only affects cancerous tumors but also healthy surrounding organs and tissues – unless, of course, the method used is the CyberKnife® System available at the CyberKnife Center of Miami.

What Is CyberKnife Treatment?

Despite its name, CyberKnife has nothing to do with surgical cutting. It is a painless, noninvasive procedure that uses advanced, image-guided radiation technology to precisely target cancerous and noncancerous tumors and destroy harmful cells. In fact, it is so precise that, unlike conventional radiation therapy, CyberKnife does not affect nearby organs or tissue.

In addition, CyberKnife has few, if any, of the same side effects that are associated with conventional radiation therapy. No anesthesia is necessary with CyberKnife, and no recovery time is required. Plus, treatments can be completed in as little as one to five 30- to 90-minute sessions – usually finished after just one to two weeks – compared to the dozens of treatments that can take many weeks or months with conventional radiation therapy.

Cancer Treatment Center in Miami

The CyberKnife System – also referred to as The Beam of Life – has been clinically proven safe and effective. It has been in use for more than 25 years, treating hundreds of thousands of patients worldwide to date.

If you have been diagnosed with a cancerous or noncancerous tumor or lesion anywhere in your body, our dedicated staff at the CyberKnife Center of Miami would love to talk to you about your treatment options and help you on your journey to recovery.

Call us at (800) 204-0455 or (305) 279-2900, or fill out our online form today to make an appointment. We look forward to hearing from you.