Your team will plan your treatment carefully to reduce the risk of side effects. But most people will have a few side effects during, or after, radiotherapy.
After your radiotherapy has finished, your oncologist or radiographer will tell you about your follow-up care. It will depend on the type of cancer and the type of radiotherapy you had. Your follow-up care may involve one of the following:
- You may not need follow-up appointments. Instead you might get advice about problems to watch for and the details of someone to contact, if needed.
- You might have regular follow-up appointments at the radiotherapy department, or your original hospital. These may be with the specialist who recommended the radiotherapy. The first appointment is usually 4 to 8 weeks after treatment finishes.
- A nurse or radiographer may follow-up by telephone. They will check how you are by asking you questions. If they are worried about anything, they will arrange an appointment for you at the clinic.
- You may have patient led follow-up. This means you do not have set appointments, but can contact the team and arrange one if you are worried. This may not be suitable for everyone. You still have any tests or scans that you need as normal.
Follow-up appointments are a good opportunity to discuss any problems or worries you have. It may help to make a list of questions beforehand so you do not forget anything important. If you feel anxious, it can help to have a friend or family member with you.
If you have any ongoing side effects or new symptoms, contact your specialist nurse, cancer doctor or the person you have been told to contact. You should do this at any time, even between appointments. Do not wait until your next scheduled appointment. You can just ask for an earlier one.