Radiation Planning Appointment; Mask Making

throat cancer radiation mask

Throat Cancer Radiation Mask

Yesterday, I had my radiology planning appointment. During this appointment, technicians heated a soft plastic screen and pulled it over my face to make a mask. They molded a headrest to fit my neck and used plastic clips to clip the face mask to the headrest. They inserted a small round plastic jar in my mouth that will keep my teeth open and hold the front of the tongue down.

throat cancer radiation mark

Throat Cancer Radiation Mark

Radiation Mark

They put a flat board with stretchy ropes and handles on my feet. From this board, the stretchy ropes come up to my hands and I hold the handles. This is to pull my shoulders down, away from the radiation ray.

After all the pieces are in position, I should be in exactly the same position every day for 20 days of radiation treatment. Each session is short, just 5 minutes.  They put a small piece of round tape on the front of my neck, which they said is strong adhesive and shouldn’t fall off for the next month. I must not remove it as it is used to ensure my body alignment each time I go to get my 5 minutes of radiation treatment. They gave me the option of having a small pinpoint tattoo on my neck that they would use for lining up my body, but I assured them the tape was fine.

They said I should receive a phone call Tuesday with my radiation plan.  The next chemotherapy session will be in conjunction with radiation. So, for now, I don’t know when my next chemo will be. Just waiting on a phone call.

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