Our Radiation Therapy Expertise
A specialized team has expertise in most types of radiation therapy to treat cancer throughout the body. We work closely with other cancer specialists to create an appropriate treatment plan for your needs.
How Radiation Therapy Works
Radiation therapy can cure cancer, stop or slow its growth, or prevent it from returning. We can also use radiation to ease cancer-related symptoms, known as palliative treatments.
Radiation therapy uses high-energy particles or waves to destroy cancer cells and shrink tumors. Your doctor recommends the best type of radiation therapy for you, depending on factors such as:
- The type, size and location of the cancer
- Whether the tumor is near healthy tissue that’s sensitive to radiation
- Your age, general health, medical history and other medical conditions
- Whether you’ll have other types of cancer treatment, such as chemotherapy or surgery
Radiation Therapies We Offer
You have access to a full range of advanced techniques, including:
External beam radiation therapy
In external beam radiation therapy (EBRT), a machine sends a precise dose of radiation into the body, usually from several directions. External beams treat a specific area—if you have lung cancer, you have radiation to your chest, not your whole body.
Hypofractionation is an advanced type of external beam therapy. We divide the radiation into larger dosages over a shorter period, allowing you to complete treatment in less time.
Stereotactic radiosurgery and stereotactic body radiotherapy
Stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) is a type of external beam radiation therapy used to treat brain cancer. This is a nonsurgical treatment, despite its name. When we use this method to treat tumors in other areas of the body, it’s called stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT).
Using advanced 3D imaging, we precisely target the cancer with higher doses of radiation in fewer treatments than standard radiation. Stereotactic treatment can help preserve healthy tissue.
Accelerated hypofractionated radiation therapy for prostate cancer
Accelerated hypofractionated radiation therapy (or precision stereotactic body radiation therapy) safely delivers higher doses of radiation during each session. Eligible patients with prostate cancer can complete treatment in five or fewer daily sessions of about five minutes each. That’s compared to the conventional treatment of 25 to 45 sessions over 5 to 9 weeks.
Radiation beams target cancer, sparing healthy tissue to reduce the risk of side effects such as urinary incontinence and impotence. Nuvance Health also uses a biodegradable rectal spacer to protect healthy tissue and preserve bowel, urinary, and sexual function.
This breakthrough treatment for prostate cancer is available at several Nuvance Health locations in the Hudson Valley:
- Putnam Hospital in Carmel, New York
- Ulster Radiation Oncology Center in Kingston, New York
- Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie, New York
Internal radiation therapy
Internal radiation therapy uses liquid or solid radiation with sources placed directly in your body.
Brachytherapy treats a specific area of your body with seeds, ribbons or capsules placed in or near the tumor. You may receive brachytherapy at a low dose rate (LDR) or high dose rate (HDR).
Systemic therapy (SRT) uses liquid radiation that travels in the blood to your body tissues, finding and killing cancer cells. You receive systemic therapy by swallowing a pill, through an infusion into a vein or via an injection.
Partial radiation and organ-sparing techniques
Some Nuvance Health hospitals offer partial radiation for breast cancer and organ-sparing radiotherapy techniques. These techniques may speed your recovery and improve quality of life.
What to Expect from Radiation Therapy
Your care team walks you through each step of radiation therapy. You receive a customized plan that outlines your radiation dosage, schedule and length of treatment.
You receive radiation treatments at a hospital or outpatient clinic near you. We provide ongoing care to manage radiation therapy side effects, so you can complete treatment as comfortably as possible.