Radiation: Week 1

Week one of radiation has come to a close. Only six more to go.

You know what that means? Only four more weeks until OU’s first football game.

Boomer.

It was while watching OU’s first football game last fall that I found a mysterious lump. I was playing with my necklace, and the lump sat really high on my chest.

Can’t believe it has almost been a year.

Anyway, radiation is easy. It is a bit of a nuisance to have to go there every day, but it is really easy. The techs (I think that’s what they are called) are REALLY nice, too.

I basically just plop down on this machine:

OU_Radiation_TrilogyI took this from the OU Cancer Center website, but this is the actual machine in the actual room that I go to every day. That thing on top makes all kinds of weird noises and goes 360 degrees around the table.

I’ll admit, the machine is kind of creepy. I feel like I’m staring into Hal 9000’s soul while I am being treated.

HAL9000.svg
HAL9000” by CryteriaOwn work. Licensed under CC BY 3.0 via Commons.

I also noticed that the camera the techs use to make sure I’m doing OK (and perhaps make sure everything stays lined up properly when they are not in the room?) is inside the big round thing that is on the top in this picture. I’m pretty sure it is aimed right up my nose which makes me a little self conscious.

They start by taking a few X-rays each day. It is a combination of these X-rays laid on top of the CT scan that they did originally that enable them to line the radiation beams up just perfectly. All technical terms, guys.

After the X-rays, The big radiation machine moves around me, administering treatments from a bunch of different angles. That part is basically like getting more X-rays except each one lasts longer than a typical X-ray would take.

I’m in and out in 20 minutes.

So far, the only problem I have had is that they have been running behind a lot each day.

Word on the street is that I’ll start getting skin irritation around week 3 or 4. Until then, I have been slathering myself with a mixture of different lotions every day. Hopefully this will prevent too much skin damage.

But one thing is for sure … this is NOTHING compared to chemo.

7 thoughts on “Radiation: Week 1

  1. Sounds like nuisance trumps nausea so yay for that! I guess that camera gives new meaning to the phrase “keeping your nose clean”.

  2. So glad this part is easier. Lord knows you need a break. I can’t believe it has almost been a year. September 2012 sucked!! Sept 2013 will be better. Love you, Jen!

  3. This blog has been a source of support to my sister-in-law who just returned from MD Anderson. She has now had a lumpectomy in each breast and will start radiation soon. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and wisdom!

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