The Benefits Of Superficial Radiation Therapy Treatments For Skin Cancer
What is Superficial Radiation Therapy or SRT?
Unlike traditional radiation that delivers massive amounts of energy that penetrates deep into the body and can cause severe skin reactions, SRT utilizes a small, portable device that delivers very low energy just below the surface of the skin. It treats only skin cancers. Because SRT uses low energy radiotherapy, skin reactions are typically mild and very small.
What is the SRT-100 Vision?
Just like its predecessor, the SRT-100, the SRT-100 Vision has the ability to deliver precise, painless, and calibrated doses of Superficial Radiation Therapy. However, this updated model now has high-frequency ultrasound for imaging, making it much more effective for use.
Is SRT customized to each individual patient, and each patient’s type of skin cancer?
- Skin cancer varies in size and cell type, and responds differently based on how it is treated.
- Protocols for treatment have been determined through many years of clinical usage in radiation therapy settings.
- The energies of the machine used to treat skin cancers are less than what is used for a chest X-Ray.
What are the differences between getting surgery and SRT treatment?
What are the benefits of SRT?
What can I expect during my course of therapy?
- A knowledgeable staff of Dermatologists, Radiation Therapists, support staff and billing experts all in place to assist you during treatment.
- Your review and signing of an informed consent to discuss treatment expectations.
- A simulation where photos, ultrasound images, and treatment parameters are entered into a computer for documentation and reproducibility. (No treatment on this day.)
- An overview of your treatment schedule (2x, 3x, 4x or 5x/week for a total of 20 treatments).
- You will generally be treated by the same Radiation Therapist each time you come in, but all the Radiation Therapists are trained to treat you.
- Your Radiation Therapist will evaluate your skin reaction daily, and once per week you will be seen by your practitioner for evaluation (No treatment given on the day you see your practitioner.)
- Your care team will recommend medication as needed for skin reactions, change your treatment if necessary, or place you on break for a short period if the skin needs some rest from the treatment.
- Your skin will heal up quickly after treatment is completed
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Am I radioactive, and is my treatment dangerous to myself or others?
A: No, you are not radioactive and your treatment is very safe.
Q: Will my hair fall out?
A: Your hair will only fall out in the area treated, and that would be a very small area.
Q: Will I be sick?
A: No, other than mild irritation at the treatment site, your body is unaffected.
Q: Does the treatment penetrate bone?
A: No, the treatment only penetrates a few millimeters into the patient’s tissue, and has little effect on normal surrounding tissue.
Q: What precautions should I follow?
A: Wash the area lightly with a gentle soap, do not use a washcloth, pat dry, and do not use perfumes or deodorants or any kind of medicine on the area without checking with your caregiver. Always cover the area with clothing or sunscreen, as the skin is more sensitive to sunlight when being treated and after treatment is completed.
Q: If the lesion were to come back, can I have it treated with SRT again?
A: No, in the unlikely event your cancer were to come back, it would have to be treated surgically. (The SRT-100 VisionTM is comparable to surgery and is 95%-plus effective in curing basal and squamous cell skin cancer.)
Q: If I’ve had radiation before in the area where my cancer is, can I have it treated with SRT?
A: No, the skin can only be treated once with radiation.
Q: Will the treatment hurt?
A: No, the treatment is painless.
Q: How long will I be in the office each day for treatment?
A: Treatments generally take about 15 minutes total. (Simulation on the first day takes 30-45 minutes).
Q: How much will this treatment cost me?
A: With most insurances, patients are generally out of pocket some dollars based on coverage and deductibles, just like with surgery. The amounts can range from very little out-of-pocket expense to several thousand dollars based on your insurance plan. For example, patients with Medicare and a secondary insurance often pay nothing for treatment. Commercial plans are generally associated with a deductible, which varies greatly.
Q: Is this treatment covered by insurance?
A: Yes, most insurances as well as Medicare cover SRT.
Q: If I have to miss an appointment, will that cause a problem?
A: No, unlike treatment in a cancer center, the occasional missed appointment is easily remedied by adding the missed appointment to the end. Minor breaks in treatment do not generally affect your treatment.
Q: How will I know if the treatment is working?
A: Your Radiation Therapist will image the area every day with ultrasound, and once per week your practitioner will do the same to evaluate the cancer’s response to the treatment.
Learn More About SRT At One Of Our Locations
Easy! You can give us a call at 1-855-669-2482 or use the Make An Appointment form in the right side bar and we’ll contact you.
If you’d like a brochure to have handy, you can download one from here.
Until next time!