Radiotherapy - One World Essay

Words: 1654
Pages: 7

What are the Benefits and Drawbacks of Radiotherapy?

Cancer is one of our planets most concerning illnesses at this time. It is the uncontrollable growth and forming of malignant tumours. In 2007, it was said to cause about 13% of all human deaths worldwide (Kleinsmith, Lewis J. M.D). Some cancers may be cured and this depends on certain variables such as the type of cancer, where the cancer is, and how early it has been detected.

One method of treatment for cancer is Radiation therapy (Radiotherapy). This is the medical use of ionizing radiation to control or kill these malignant cells. However, there is doubt among society about the use of radiotherapy. This is mainly because some long-term side effects include the growth of scar
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Using linear accelerators is more efficient than using ring-type accelerators. This is because; linear accelerators can generate and maintain stronger light rays. This is crucial so that the cancer can be completely destroyed and so that the blasts are concentrated enough to not overly damage the healthy cells surrounding the cancerous ones. The other main advantage of using radiotherapy over other cancer treatments is because it is a focused treatment. Other treatments such as chemotherapy affect the entire body. Therefore, radiotherapy has fewer adverse effects on the rest of the body compared to other treatments.

Radiotherapy also has several disadvantages and limitations. Firstly, this treatment can only be used if the cancer has been diagnosed at an early stage. Once the cancer has spread over several areas, this treatment cannot be used. Also, the linear accelerators require large power supplies, increasing the construction and maintenance expense of the machines. Radiation therapy delivers cancer-killing doses of radiation at the tumor site, the National Cancer Institute explains, but doesn't travel throughout the body to destroy cancer cells that have spread as chemotherapy treatment can do. Therefore, radiotherapy cannot be used after the cancer has spread to a certain degree. As