Designing a radiation treatment plan for your child is a three-part process that begins with your family coming in for a consultative meeting with our pediatric radiation oncologist. If radiotherapy is part of your child's overall cancer treatment plan, our radiation oncologist will walk you through this process step-by-step and is always available to answer questions.
We provide outpatient consultations at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute's Jimmy Fund Clinic or Boston Children's Hospital. Children requiring a hospital stay are admitted to one of the oncology units at Boston Children's Hospital.
Once you and your radiation oncologist decide to pursue radiation therapy for your child, we'll plan the specific technique for his or her treatment.
The first step in establishing a treatment plan is to identify the area to be treated. This "mapping" of the treatment area is done on a CT-simulator, which produces scans that help identify the best treatment approach for your child.
In order to provide the best possible treatment options:
- We use stereotactic techniques for brain tumor treatment to decrease the long term effects of therapy.
- We use computerized tomography for radiation therapy treatment planning to optimize techniques, identify critical structures, and minimize toxicity.
After simulation is completed, we make calculations to determine the specific dose of radiation that should be given to the treatment area.
Treatments provided by our care team include:
- intensity modulation radiation therapy (IMRT)
- total body irradiation
- stereotactic irradiation in the treatment of brain tumors