High Dose Rate Brachytherapy

What Is High Dose Rate Brachytherapy?

High dose rate brachytherapy is a type of radiation therapy that uses implanted radioactive seeds to deliver maximum radiation to a tumor for a shorter period of time. Doctors recommend this therapy to directly target tumors while protecting surrounding, healthy tissue.

What to Expect

High dose rate brachytherapy is an outpatient procedure. It requires local anesthesia where catheters (small flexible tubes) are placed under the skin and into or near the cancer.

A radioactive seed, about the size of a grain of rice, is inserted into the catheter for several minutes, then removed. Depending on the type of cancer, patients may receive treatments once or daily. Patients are not radioactive after the seed is removed.

Possible Side Effects

Most patients do not feel any discomfort during or after the procedure. Side effects that you may experience include:

  • Fatigue
  • Skin irritation at the site of the incision

Cancers Treated