► Three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT) uses CT images and special computers to very precisely map the location of a cancer in 3 dimensions.
► Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) is another advanced form of external radiation therapy using photons. Apart from mapping out the three-dimensional location of the tumor the intensity of the beams can be adjusted.
► Conformal proton beam radiation therapy uses proton beams instead of x-rays. Protons are parts of atoms that deliver more radiation to the cancer while reducing side effects on nearby normal tissues.
► Stereotactic radiosurgery delivers a large, precise radiation dose to a small tumor area. Since no incision is actually made tumors originating from or spreading to the brain are treated with this technique.
► Intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT) is the delivery of radiation to the cancer during surgery. The radiation may be given externally or internally, and is often combined with a course of external radiation given before or after the operation.
► Hyperthermia refers to the use of heat to treat cancer. Heat created by microwaves and ultrasound is being studied in combination with radiation and appears to improve the effect of the radiation.
► Radioimmunotherapy: It is the use of radiolabeled antibodies to deliver doses of radiation directly to the cancer site. Some tumor cells contain specific antigens that trigger the production of tumor-specific antibodies. These antibodies are attached to radioactive substances and injected into the body which seeks out cancer cells, which are destroyed by the radiation. This approach can minimize the risk of radiation damage to healthy cells. Two Radioimmunotherapy treatments, ibritumomab tiuxetan and tositumomab and iodine 131 tositumomab, have been approved for advanced adult non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL).