by Jeff Sklar, DC

Radiation oncologists work tirelessly to formulate treatment regimens that will help their patients. Unfortunately, treating cancer does have side effects. In radiation oncology, consistent body positioning is paramount to ensure the most accurate treatment is administered to the patient. While radiation teams utilize customized immobilization equipment to help prevent pain or injury, patients may experience some discomfort. For instance, some patients that undergo weeks of radiation for breast cancer have been known to develop neck and shoulder pain related to the daily positioning of their body for radiation treatment. This musculoskeletal pain, sometimes called cervical radiculopathy, or a pinched nerve, may disrupt treatment because of its severity. It is undesirable for both the patient and physician to delay treatment due to discomfort.

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