A group for discussions and questions about radiotherapy. Get together, share your experiences and support each other.

Just had my first pelvic radiotherapy session

Posted by

Hi All,

I thought I would explain my first Radiotherapy session for anyone who is waiting to start and wondering.

I am having pelvic radiotherapy as adjuvant treatment following surgery which removed my uterus, tubes and ovaries. My lymph nodes were left, due to adhesions.

So, I had my planning CT scan 2 weeks ago. This morning , I had it all explained to me again by the radiologist, I asked and confirmed which structures they were zapping. Then I laid on the bed in the centre of the room, with support under my head and knees, so was comfortable. Then the radiologist and assistant left the room. There was some background music playing. The machine , which looked and was very high tech, moved round me, making some quiet little sounds sometimes. Then it was all done, and the radiographer came back  and said that was it, and discussed the timings for tomorrow( starting chemo as well then, having the chemo first).

The machine was image guided, doing a type of radiotherapy called VMAT ( volumetric modulated arc therapy), so the machine moved round me in a 360 degree arc.

The whole thing took 30 minutes from walking in to walking out. I wasn't timing it but I guess about 15 minutes was the actual treatment.

The radiographer said the effects are cumulative, so I may not get side effects for the first 2 weeks.

Hope this is useful for anyone who is wondering. 

Mrs Woodentop.
Posted by

Hi . Always good to get the first one out of the way as you then know what to expect. You then get in to the daily routine. Surprising how upbeat these places usually are and not all doom and gloom as you may expect. I had 6 weeks of it and didn't really have any side effects other than tiredness towards the end. I hope all goes well for you. Best wishes.

Best wishes to All,   rily.  What is a Community Champion ?

Posted by

Hi Mrs Woodentop

Goodness me I'm old enough to remember the woodentops.

I've just completed eight weeks of pelvic radiotherapy. The team I had were fantastic, and I had a pleasant, personal, and positive experience.

I had a few minor side effects, which were easily manged, and I kept my team informed of anything that was happening. I found them to be very supportive,and helpful, especially as I messed up on the odd occasion. Keep them informed, and the odd packet of biscuits, or cake shows your appreciation of what they're doing for you, and certainly helps with your treatment.

Best wishes for your on going treatment

Believe you can do it, and you’re halfway there.
Posted by

Thanks flightsim,

Its reassuring to hear you only had a few manageable side effects from 8 weeks. Glad you had a positive experience.

I am finding the team really kind and supportive too. I messed up a bit today, have learned what not to have for breakfast! It was 3rd time lucky after emptying and refilling, but there were others to be seen in the gaps so I did not feel too bad. 

I will definitely make sure the team know how appreciated they are.

Best Wishes for your continued recovery now you are done with treatment.

Mrs Woodentop.
Posted by

Thanks rily 

Its good to know that lots of side effects do not have to happen.  Glad you had a good experience.

Thanks for the encouragement. 

Best Wishes to you too.

Mrs Woodentop.
Posted by

Well I finished my 5 weeks pelvic radiotherapy on Friday last week and just finished a treatment free week before my next chemo.

Everyone was lovely, especially when I got it wrong in judging the empty bowel /full bladder combination.  I am looking forward to getting back to eating fruit and veg and not having to be bothered with timings!

I have been lucky so far with side effects. I have had some digestive system pain and soreness, bad enough for co-codamol once or twice, but otherwise so far the main effect has been tiredness. 

It's been very manageable so far. 

Mrs Woodentop.
Posted by

Hi Mrs Woodentops, I haven't started with radiotherapy yet.  Could you tell me more about the food you couldn't eat?  love fruit and veg it keeps me going otherwise my system halts.