Once a diagnosis of cancer has been made, you will probably talk with your primary care physician along with several cancer specialists, such as a surgeon, a medical oncologist and a radiation oncologist. You will want to ask these doctors about all your treatment options.
In many cases, your cancer will need to be treated by using more than one type of treatment. For example, if you have brain metastases, you might receive radiation therapy to destroy cancer cells in or near your brain (by a radiation oncologist) and/or have surgery to remove one of the tumors (by a neurosurgeon), which may help decrease symptoms. In some cases, higher doses of radiation in very few treatments are used to treat cancer within the brain. This type of treatment is called stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). You also might receive chemotherapy, immunotherapy or targeted therapy (by a medical oncologist).
After reviewing your medical record including imaging, as well as completing a thorough patient history and physical examination, your radiation oncologist will discuss with you the potential benefits and risks of radiation therapy and answer your questions. For a list of questions that you may want to ask, please see the section Questions to Ask Your Doctor.