• Imaging is a term for any type of x-ray image. We may also call it a “picture,” “image” or “x-ray.”

  • Imaging is used to study and confirm your position before we start your treatment.

  • The type and rate of imaging depends on the specific treatment plan.

  • There may be a delay between when you are imaged and when your treatment begins while your treatment team reviews your imaging.

Imaging Rate

The amount of imaging can range from one day per week to every day. It depends on your treatment site, your setup and the doctor’s orders. We use a set of rules to figure out when you need imaging.

Some treatment setups are more difficult than others. It depends on the location and size of the region being treated. Our goal is to get you in the same position as you were at the time of simulation. This can be hard because the body can move in so many ways.

Treatment Images

  • Help show that your body is in the correct spot for treatment.

  • Are always checked for correctness before starting the treatment.

Radiation Doses

The radiation dose that you receive from imaging is very small compared to the dose you receive for treatment. While we try to limit the extra dose from imaging, our first goal is to always make sure you are in the correct position.

Preparing for Imaging

Your most important job during your treatment is to hold still. Please let us know if at any time you feel discomfort, or you feel like you cannot hold still. We can always see and hear you during your treatment and will watch for any signs of discomfort or motion.

Lead Shields

We do not use a shield (like at the dentist) because of what we need to see in our images. We use stronger (higher energy) x-rays than your dentist. This means that a lead apron would not work well as a shield.

Reasons for Imaging

These x-rays are not used to diagnose. We can rarely see your tumor on the image. The purpose of the images is to make sure you are in the correct position for treatment. Your doctor is looking at your images throughout your treatment. You can talk with your doctor about their meaning.

Let the treatment staff know if you have any questions or concerns about your treatment imaging. They can help you or refer you to a member of your treatment team to provide more information.