Brachytherapy, also known as internal radiation therapy, places radioactive material directly inside, or next to, the tumor. It uses a higher total dose of radiation to treat a smaller area than is used in external beam radiation therapy (EBRT), which directs high-energy radiation beams directly at the tumor from outside the body.

What type of equipment is used?

The type of radioactive material used (iodine, palladium, cesium or iridium) will depend on the type of treatment. In all types, the radiation source is encapsulated. This means that it is enclosed inside a non-radioactive metal capsule usually called a "seed". This helps prevent the material from traveling to other parts of the patient's body. Permanent implants place the radioactive seeds directly into the tumor using a special applicator. This is usually done with ultrasound and/or x-ray imaging to ensure precise placement.

Temporary implants use special needles, catheters or applicators. After the precise positioning of the device has been confirmed, the radiation sources are inserted. This is called "afterloading". The oncologist may insert and remove the material by hand after the applicator is placed. Or, the oncologist could use a computer-controlled afterloading machine remotely to insert the material. Medical imaging helps position the material to most effectively treat the tumor. A computer calculates the position of the source and the amount of time needed to deliver the intended dose of radiation.


Permanent brachytherapy

Permanent brachytherapy inserts needles into the tumor that have been preloaded with radioactive seeds. The physician will remove the needle and leave the seeds inside. The seeds may also be implanted using a device that inserts them individually at regular intervals. The procedure could use medical imaging to help locate the seeds. The physician may later perform further imaging studies to verify the placement of the seeds.

What will I feel during the procedure?

Before treatment begins, the doctor may place an intravenous line into your arm or hand to administer the medication. Depending on the site of the tumor and your doctor's recommendations, you may receive general anesthesia and/or a sedative to numb you. If anesthesia or heavy sedation is used, you will then be transferred to a recovery room. Depending on the type of treatment, you may be able to return home the same day or you may be transferred to a hospital room.


Intramedical Imaging is a company created in 1998. We specialize in the design, development and sale of medical equipment for the detection of cancer during surgery. Our molecular imaging equipment is the most sensitive and modern equipment that can be used during an operation to identify abnormal tissues. 

By acquiring our equipment you will be ensuring quality care for your patients. Remember that your reputation is also enhanced by the modernity of your practice. Don't get left behind and call us at 1-844-426-6277. We look forward to hearing from you, we will be glad to assist you.