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Treatment Planning and Simulation

Simulation is the first step in the radiation oncology treatment process and involves consultation with your physician and radiation therapy team during which every part of your treatment is planned. Planning includes determining the correct body position for treatment, taking imaging scans, making reference marks for the positions on the skin, and virtual simulation.

  • Body Positioning: Your treatment team will determine the best position for your body to receive radiation treatment. Immobilization devices may be used to ensure you are in the exact position during each subsequent treatment.
  • Imaging: Once the correct position is determined, images are taken to determine where on the body the radiation will be focused. This may include traditional X-rays or PET (positron emission tomography)/CT (computed tomography).
  • Marking: To ensure that all treatments are delivered to the right place on your body, the skin may be temporarily or permanently marked.
  • Virtual Simulation: During virtual simulation, the images taken earlier are used to create a 3D model of your anatomy, including the tumor and its location, which augments an oncologist’s ability to plan the optimal course of treatment.