Will I be radioactive?
After your treatment has been given and the catheters have been removed, you will NOT be radioactive. Your bodily wastes (urine and faeces) will NOT be radioactive.
Will treatment affect my sex life?
While it is still safe for you to have sexual intercourse during your radiation therapy, the desire to have sex may decrease because you may become tired, anxious or unwell. It may help to discuss your worries with your partner and/or your radiation oncologist or nurse. A referral to a sexual counsellor may also assist.
What can you do if intercourse is painful?
You may find you are in too much discomfort to have sex until the tissues in your vagina have healed. This may take 4-6 weeks after your radiation therapy has finished. It may help to discuss this with your partner, radiation oncologist and/or nurse. A referral to a sexual counsellor may assist in managing this side effect. The regular use of a vaginal dilator will help with keeping the tissues in your vagina flexible and elastic. Ask for eviQ patient information - How to manage vaginal stenosis using a vaginal dilator.
Do I still need to use contraception?
Yes, you should use contraception during and after radiation therapy. Ask your doctor or nurse about what type of contraception you should use and for how long.
Will this treatment affect my fertility?
Some cancer treatments can reduce your fertility. This can make it difficult or impossible to get pregnant. Talk to your doctor or nurse before you start any treatment. Depending on your situation there may be fertility sparing options available to you and/or your partner, discuss these with your doctor or nurse. See our patient information sheets – Fertility in women during cancer treatment.
Should I be on a special diet while having treatment?
You may be asked to go on a special diet before your brachytherapy. You will be given instructions by your treatment team. You can resume your regular eating habits after your procedure and it is important to keep your bowel movements regular by eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of fluids.
Will I lose my hair?
Brachytherapy will not cause you to lose any hair in the treatment area. If you do lose your hair in the treatment area this will be from your external beam radiation therapy. In most patients this is temporary but for some this may be permanent.
Can I drive during treatment?
If you have received a general anaesthetic for your treatment, you are not allowed to drive for 24 hours. Please ensure you have someone to drive you home and discuss any concerns with your radiation oncologist.
Can I resume normal activity after the procedure?
Avoid any heavy lifting or strenuous physical activity for the first two weeks following your treatment. Following this, you may return to your normal activities. Occasionally, vigorous activity may cause some blood in the urine. If you experience this and it continues for more than a few days, tell your doctor.
Can I have a flu or tetanus vaccination?
It is usually safe to have vaccinations such as flu and tetanus while you are having treatment. If you are due for vaccinations talk to your radiation oncologist about the best time to have them. If you are having chemotherapy, talk to your medical oncologist before having any vaccinations.
Is it safe to take vitamin tablets and herbal medicines?
Before starting any medication which includes prescription, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and alternative, natural or herbal medicines tell your doctor, radiation therapist or nurse. Some medications may interact with your treatment.
Who can I talk to if I am not coping?
You may feel anxious or depressed during and after the treatment process. Let your treating team know and they will arrange for you to talk to someone. You can also call the Cancer Council 13 11 20 for more cancer information and support.
How do you know if the treatment is successful?
It is not possible to know if your treatment has been successful immediately after you finish treatment. Your doctor will see you during and after your treatment and will discuss your progress.
What is the follow up?
Once your treatment has finished, you will be advised by your doctor as to what follow up appointments are needed.