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Linear accelerator (LINAC) therapy is a radiosurgery treatment in which high-energy x-rays are used to destroy tumors. These high-energy x-rays are generated when microwave technology is used to accelerate electrons in a part of the LINAC device called the wave guide. These accelerated electrons are then aimed at a heavy metal target. High-energy x-rays are produced from the target as a result of these collisions.



LINAC therapy can be used anywhere on the body. It is particularly useful in brain tumor patients because it is very precise.


 Oncor Linear Accelerator



LINAC therapy allows the doctor to deliver higher doses of radiation to the tumor with limited damage to the surrounding healthy tissue and/or organs. For many cancers, LINAC therapy is one of the most precise and advanced forms of radiation treatment available.


How Linear Accelerator Therapy is Delivered

The patient is positioned on a moveable treatment couch with a head frame or face mask covering the head. Lasers are used to ensure that the patient is in the proper position. Based on the results of an image study conducted just prior to treatment, the LINAC produces high-energy x-rays that are shaped to conform to the shape of the patient’s tumor. The patient must remain perfectly still until treatment is complete.


Potential Side Effects

LINAC therapy is painless. Patients who are treated with LINAC therapy have fewer side effects than patients who are treated with conventional radiation therapy. Your treatment team can provide more specific information about side effects and how to manage them.


It is important to note that the information provided here is basic and does not take the place of professional advice. If you have any questions about how brain tumors are treated, please contact your doctor.