If your radiation oncologist determines that radiation therapy is right for you, the next step is your simulation appointment. Prior to receiving radiation treatments, most patients have a simulation CT scan to record images of the parts of the body to be treated.

At this stage, your skin will be marked with small reference points to allow the therapist to aim the radiation at the exact same spot during each treatment. If necessary, specially made devices will be used to position your body exactly as it will be during the actual radiation treatments. The images captured during the simulation session are recorded by computer for further study during the next step of the treatment-planning process.

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