Thursday, February 14, 2013

My Last Day of Radiation Treatment

Wednesday February 13, 2013 was our grandson's 15th birthday and my very last day of radiation treatments.  The folks at the Sebring Cancer Center are some of the very best; and that's everyone from the receptionist to my Radiation Oncologist, Dr. Stephanie Rapke.    When I went for my treatment on Tuesday, I prepared them - telling them I was bringing my camera the next day!

Sebring Cancer Center has some of the  most advanced technologies available to treat cancer.  One of them is  the  Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) – a sophisticated type of external beam radiotherapy which allows delivery of precisely targeted radiation beams to tumors, while sparing the surrounding healthy organs.

Pictured below:  Top left, clockwise:  Sandy - the receptionist who greeted me every morning with a smile, just before 8:30 am.  On Wednesday she greeted me saying " is your last day!"   With the exception of just ONE day - when there was a problem with the machine I was in the radiation room ready for treatment on or before my 8:30 appointment time.    Next picture is the IMRT as it was positioned when I arrived.  I would lay comfortably on the table with my arms in those little blue holders above my head.......Once positioned correctly the table would rise and the machine would do it's thing!

The next picture is of Tina - who often helped with my daily positioning or especially when they took the weekly photos........But it's Monday's that I remember best with Tina when I met with the Doctor after treatment.  "You can put on a blue robe..........I'll meet you at the scales!"

The picture at the bottom left is of Stephanie, who actually gave me my daily treatment.   With the exception of ONE day Stephanie was there to greet me every single day.  She was so professional, but so very nice - always making sure I was comfortable.  They don't come any better.  

And the last picture gives you an idea of how the IMRT machine moves/works. The table would be raised much higher.  The first 5 weeks that machine would start at the far left, move about 45 degrees for the next treatment and move it's way all the way to the right.  The last week or so was call the Boost - where the radiation was targeted to just the impacted area.

I left them a big box of chocolates for Valentines day. Seems insignificant now, after all they did for me.   God willing - I should be done, with the exception of regular check ups and regular mammograms.   Thank you all for your prayers.

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