Superficial X-ray Radiation Therapy (SXRT)

Superficial x-ray radiation therapy (SXRT) uses low-penetrating x-rays to deliver treatment. As the x-rays don’t penetrate very far into the body, they can be very effective in treating skin cancers.

What is SXRT used for?

SXRT is most effective for skin cancers and some non-cancerous skin conditions including:

What does SXRT mean for you?

As SXRT is used for treating skin conditions, the radiation therapy team will draw the area requiring treatment on the skin with a temporary pencil.

SXRT skin cancer

Inside the treatment room, a thin lead shield is placed on the skin. A hole in the lead will match exactly the area to be treated. The soft lead is moulded to the body shape and is used to protect the surrounding tissue.

Once the shielding is in place the radiation therapy machine is positioned to touch the shielding. You will not feel this. The radiation therapists leave the room for a few minutes to turn the machine on, and will watch you during the treatment. Once treatment is complete, the temporary pencil is removed before you leave.

The SXRT team

SXRT treatment is planned and delivered at four of our Peter Mac radiation therapy sites: Melbourne, Bendigo, Moorabbin and Sunshine.

A team of specialists are required to plan and deliver SXRT, including radiation oncologists, radiation therapists and medical physicists. You will also be supported by a range of other professionals including nurses and allied health practitioners. The Peter Mac radiation therapy team is proud to offer this treatment, and we are dedicated to developing and progressing treatment options for the people of Victoria.

Please speak with your doctor to determine if SXRT is the appropriate treatment choice for you.