› Forums › General Melanoma Community › Radiation mask
- This topic has 6 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 3 years, 7 months ago by Cindy Lou.
Hello, friends! I had 2 surgeries in September to remove melanoma from my neck and from underneath my jaw bone. PET scan done last week shows more melanoma in the same area. So, I will begin radiation traetments to the right side of my face & neck the first week in Nov. I was surprised to learn that a mask will be made for me which I will wear when I receive the radiation. Just in time for Halloween, right? Has anyone else worn a mask for treatments? I am wondering if I will freak out!
- October 25, 2019 at 2:34 am
- October 25, 2019 at 9:45 am
My husband completed 3 weeks of 6 weeks radiotherapy yesterday. He gets 2 greys (measurement) per day every weekday for what will be a total of 60 greys once it’s all over. In late July the surgeon removed his parotid gland (salivary gland) in addition to 43 lymph nodes of which 2 were involved, thus the radiation is directed at his lower cheek and neck area. Because the area is so compacted and there are other organs in this area such as the thyroid which they don’t want to radiate, they make the bespoke mask so as to help you not move when they begin the radiation. My husband said that it was a bit claustrophobic at the beginning, but that you get used to it quickly. Knowing what to expect really helped him though. He viewed photos of the mask on the internet before going to get fitted. You may want to input “IMRT radiotherapy mask images” or “VMAT radiotherapy mask images” in your internet search engine to get a better idea as to what to expect. Besides the radiotherapy, my husband is also getting immunotherapy in the form of NIVO once every 2 weeks for a year at a dose of 3mg/kg. At yesterday’s appointment, the doctor was surprised at how well my husband’s throat was doing because throat pain is one of the painful side effects of the radiotherapy. My husband religously rinses his mouth with baking soda and water solution SEVERAL times a day, puts some anti-irritation drops into his mouth that the doctor gave him, and will apply 99.9% aloe vera gel to his cheek and neck MANY times a day, especially right after the radiation when he feels the area gets very hot. I don’t know if those are the reasons why he isn’t suffering the pain throat that the doctor sees in most patients, but thought I should mention them in case they are contributing to his favorable condition (especially because they are steps that you can easily do if you choose to do so). Also based on Bubbles’ own experience of remaining active and doing exercise during her melanoma period, my husband is trying to go to the gym every other day in order to keep his whole body as healthy as possible.
Wishing you the best,
- October 27, 2019 at 11:03 am
I just completed a week of whole brain radiation this week, and it was not as scary as it sounds. They create the mask to fit your head, and hold it in place. Each proceedure takes about 4 minutes, so quick that I never regretted going. It turns out I have 9 mets in my brain, so that’s why they opted for whole brain. I’d love to hear from anyone else who has gone through something similar.
JudiAUParticipantI spent Thanksgiving Week doing radiation to my brain last year. The mask when they made it was a little hot but not a big deal. I found radiation much, much easier to deal with then surgery and would choose it any day. I did get about 100 white hairs from the process but no other issues. I as tired and that was it.
- October 25, 2019 at 6:09 pm
I am in the hospital right now following brain surgery but this seems like baby brain surgery compared to others. My nuero surgeon says there were a lot of blood vessels so I’ll do it again.
Best of life luck.
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