Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy (also called radiotherapy) use high-energy x-rays, or other types of radiation, to kill cancer cells or stop them from growing.

For women being treated for vaginal cancer, the radiation can be delivered in two way: (1) external radiation is directed at the entire abdomen or just the pelvis, depending on the location of the cancer; and (2) during internal radiation (brachytherapy) radioactive devices are placed in the vagina or surrounding tissue for a specified period of time.

The extent of the cancer dictates which or both of these delivery systems are used and in what order.

Side Effects of Radiation
The side effects of radiation therapy depend on the dose used and the part of the body being treated. Common side effects include:

  • Dry, reddened skin in the treated area
  • Fatigue
  • Diarrhea
  • Discomfort when urinating
  • Narrowing of the vagina
  • Anemia

Most of these side effects are temporary. Be sure to talk with your treatment team members about any side effects you experience. They can help you find ways to manage them.

Spotlight

SGO, ASCCP Clarify Recommendations of Primary HPV Testing for Cervical Cancer Screening. Read the release.

Awareness

2015 National Race to End Women’s Cancer Chair Camille Grammer wants all women to know the symptoms of uterine cancer.

Research

The Foundation’s research award winners will be announced in March. Thank you to all who sent in their applications.

Education

The next Ovarian Cancer Survivors Course is Feb. 28 in West Palm Beach, FL. For more information, click here.