A member asked:

Do radiation therapy increase cancer cell growth of other undetected types of cancer?

3 doctors weighed in across 2 answers
Dr. Andrew Turrisi answered

Specializes in Radiation Oncology

Low doses of: Diagnostic radiation (like mammograms, chest x-rays) may be exceedingly rare causes. We know that XRT for hodgkin's in young woemn led to excessive risk of breast and lung cancer, and we now use it more sparingly and to lower volume and doses if at all. Even low doses for children to prevent brain relapse in leukemia has been linked to excess brain tumors. But second tumors do not occur in all.

Answered 9/28/2016

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Dr. Jeffrey Buchsbaum answered

Specializes in Radiation Oncology

It is a balance: The real issue is that if one uses radiation, the benefit far, far, far outweighs the risk. Yes, the use of radiaiton can increas cancer cell growth. And this is probably a tiny, tiny number 1/10000000th that of the benefits, but it exists and to say otherwise is not honest. Do cars cause death in the same sentence: yes, as people die because of car crashes. But similarly, there is a balance.

Answered 1/4/2014

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