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Doctor insights on: Side Effects Of Radiation Therapy For Breast Cancer

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After effects of radiation therapy for breast cancer?

After effects of radiation therapy for breast cancer?

Side effects include: Acute effects include erythema hyperpigmentation of skin, moist desquamation of skin long term effects of radiation therapy for breast cancer include: radiation fibrosis of lung lymphedema of the affected side upper extremity myocardial injury hypothyroidism brachial plexus injury risk of second neoplasm (radiation induced malignancy). ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
1,336 doctors shared insights

Breast Cancer (Female) (Definition)

Breast cancer results when glandular cells lining the milk ducts and lobules of the human breast begin to grow in an unregulated manner. The growth occurs initially inside the ducts but eventually breaks outside into the breast tissue and ultimately spreads both to the lymph nodes in the armpit and via the bloodstream to other parts of the body. Because of the promoting affect of estrogen almost all breast cancer occurs in women and is a rarity in men. The unregulated growth is due to both inherited and acquired genetic defects. It is the most common malignancy in women but it often curable if found early and treated effectively with surgery, hormonal therapy, chemotherapy and targeted therapy, or a combination thereof. Early detection before the malignancy becomes large enough to be felt depends on mammography/sonography and MRI imaging of the breast on an annual basis. ...Read more


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Can radiation therapy for breast cancer give me leukemia?

Can radiation therapy for breast cancer give me leukemia?

Not likely: Leukemia is more likely as a cancer caused by chemotherapy since it exposes more bone marrow. Radiation to the breast will expose very little bone marrow and leukemia is not likely but nothing is impossible. ...Read more

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Could radiation therapy for breast cancer be giving me a cough?

Could radiation therapy for breast cancer be giving me a cough?

Yes: There is a small amount of lung radiated that usually causes no problems. But sometimes this amount is large enough to cause a pneumonitis that can cause a cough. You need an exam and a lung x-ray to determine if this is the cause. ...Read more

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Can I get radiation therapy for breast cancer if I have a port-a-cath in place?

Can I get radiation therapy for breast cancer if I have a port-a-cath in place?

Yes: The mediport is used for chemotherapy and the patient may also need radiation. It should have been placed on the opposite side to not interfere with radiation. If not it can always be moved or removed. ...Read more

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I am currently doing radiation therapy for breast cancer. What kind of deodorant can I use?

I am currently doing radiation therapy for breast cancer. What kind of deodorant can I use?

Ask your rad doc: Ask your radiation oncologist or the therapist. They get this question a lot. It depends on where the radiation fields are located, your reaction to the radiation, and the doc's personal preferences. You want to avoid irritation. ...Read more

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How soon after finishing radiation therapy for breast cancer should I get a follow-up mammogram?

How soon after finishing radiation therapy for breast cancer should I get a follow-up mammogram?

4 to 6 months: The side effects of the skin need to heal and breast heals and any scarring internally improve. That takes 4 to 6 months. Even then that is the baseline mammogram and surgery and radiation changes will be seen. Then future mammograms will show these changes are improving. ...Read more

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How effective is radiation therapy for breast cancer?

How effective is radiation therapy for breast cancer?

Very effective.: Radiation therapy (rt) is never a primary treatment for breast cancer, but rather a supplement to surgery for the local treatment of breast cancer. Rt is mandatory following breast conserving surgery: local recurrence rates are decreased from >25% to <5% with rt. Rt is also used after mastectomy for patients that are at high risk for local recurrence. ...Read more

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Are there any traditional indian alternatives to radiation therapy for breast cancer?

Are there any traditional indian alternatives to radiation therapy for breast cancer?

Careful: Most but not all breast cancers need radiation therapy. Please be careful of claims made by alternative treatments for cancer and ask for independent well controlled studies that demonstrate benefit. At this time alternative treatments are of a supportive role to more conventional therapies. I personally know of women whose cancer got worse while they tried alternative methods. ...Read more

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I got a scar tissue in lung after radiation therapy for breast cancer. No one told me it could happen. What should I do?

I got a scar tissue in lung after radiation therapy for breast cancer. No one told me it could happen. What should I do?

Very rare, but...: ...Well-recognized complication of breast radiation therapy (of course, when you are that "one in a million", that doesn't help). Modern techniques are designed to maximize rx to the breast & minimize effects on the heart and lungs. Your radiation oncologist certainly should have discussed this with you pre-treatment--informed consent is a necessary part of any rx regimen. ...Read more

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Do i need radiation therapy if I have early stage breast cancer with clear margins?

Do i need radiation therapy if I have early stage  breast cancer with clear margins?

Yes!: There is nothing that makes a surgeon more uncomfortable after a lumpectomy than hearing the question: "did you get it all?" cancer is very humbling and it's growth is not completely predictable. While our margins may be "clear", we know many women will return with cancer at this lumpectomy site within 2-3 years unless radiation therapy is given. With rare exception, radiation rx is necessary. ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
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Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


Gamma Rays (Definition)

This is light of extremely short wavelengths typically produced either among the stars / in cosmic rays or by radioactive element decay. Gamma rays form the background of normal radiation in which we all live; it is substantially greater than the exposure we get from imaging scans or should get from ...Read more