Treatment Options

​Our patients have access to the widest range of radiation treatment technologies available in the world today, including state-of-the-art proton beam therapy and the only medical center-based clinical cyclotron for fast neutron therapy. Our providers are experts in these and many more radiation oncology therapies, and will determine the best course of treatment for you.

Brachytherapy is the placement of radioactive sources within or next to a tumor. UW Medicine Radiation Oncology offers high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy, which involves placement of the radiation source into the tumor for several minutes in multiple doses, usually once or twice a day or once or twice a week. Low-dose-rate (LDR) brachytherapy, which involves the placement of the radiation source into the tumor area for several days or permanently, is also available.

External Beam Radiation Therapy involves the direction of one or multiple beams of radiation through the skin into the cancerous area and the immediate surrounding area, destroying the main tumor and any nearby cancer cells.

Fast Neutron Therapy is a very powerful form of external beam radiation therapy used to treat tumors that are difficult to destroy using conventional x-ray radiation therapy.

Gamma Knife Radiosurgery is a minimally invasive treatment for patients with brain tumors or abnormalities of the brain that are close to delicate structures and blood vessels.

Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) uses imaging from a CT scan, ultrasound or x-ray to target tumors that have shifted position, while avoiding nearby healthy tissue.

Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) allows the radiation beam to be shaped to fit a tumor by breaking the beam into many "beamlets," with the intensity of each beamlet adjusted individually.

Intraoperative Radiation Therapy (IORT) is provided during surgery, allowing radiation to be applied directly to the tumor.

Proton Beam Therapy​ is a form of external beam radiation treatment that uses protons rather than electrons or x-rays to treat certain types of cancer, reducing the radiation dose to nearby healthy tissue.

Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT) involves the use of extremely focused beams of radiation, usually in higher doses than daily radiation treatment, to destroy certain types of tumors located outside the brain.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) is a form of stereotactic radiation therapy used to treat the brain and spine.

Three-Dimensional (3-D) Conformal Radiation Therapy uses computers and special imaging techniques such as CT, MRI or PET scans to show the size, shape and location of a tumor and surrounding organs, allowing the radiation treatment plan to be specifically tailored to each patient's anatomy.