Radiotherapy uses high-energy rays to destroy cancer cells, while doing as little harm as possible to normal cells. Usually, the course of radiotherapy lasts for three weeks (Monday to Friday with a break over the weekend). Each session lasts about 15minutes. External radiotherapy does not make you radioactive and it is safe for you to be with other people, including children, after your treatment.
You may develop some side effects which usually disappear gradually over a few weeks or months after treatment finishes. The most common side effects are skin irritation, tiredness, and breast ache or swelling. Occasionally, patients may develop late side effects which mainly involve a change in the way the breast looks and feels. Breasts may feel firmer (harder than the other breast) or smaller (loss of volume). In some cases patients can experience what is called Telangiectasia which are thread-like veins (spidery marks) in the skin of the breast.