Superficial Radiation

Superficial Radiation

About Superficial Radiation

Looking for a non-surgical alternative to treat basal or squamous cell carcinomas or keloids? Southwest Michigan Dermatology has the option for you! We are the only practice who offers this advanced treatment within forty miles of Portage, MI. Image-Guided SRT is performed right here in our main office under the supervision of your own doctor by a Board-Certified Radiation Therapist. Image guided means an ultrasound is completed each visit so you can actually observe the progression of your treatment! If you’ve been diagnosed with a non-melanoma skin cancer or keloid, call us today to schedule an appointment to see if you’re a candidate for this non-invasive alternative that boasts a 99% patient satisfaction rating.

Superficial Radiation Q & A

What is Image-Guided Superficial Radiation Therapy?

Image-Guided Superficial Radiation Therapy (IG-SRT) is a nonsurgical superficial treatment that uses low levels of X-ray energy to kill cancer cells and allow normal tissue to grow back in its place. For many people dealing with nonmelanoma skin cancer, Image-Guided SRT offers 99.3% cure rate without the downtime, side effects, and cosmetic issues sometimes associated with surgery. 

Does the treatment cause damage anywhere else?

No, the treatment only penetrates a few millimeters into the skin and has little to no effect on normal tissue.

How much time do I spend in the office for treatment?

Generally, 10-15 minutes are spent in office for each treatment. You will be comfortably seated in the treatment chair for each treatment. The first appointment takes approximately 30-45 minutes for treatment planning.

How many treatments does it take?

Typically, it takes 20 treatments, with 3-4 treatments a week, to complete the full course of therapy.


What should I expect with IG-SRT?

  • Biopsy: A sample is taken from a suspected skin lesion in our clinic.


  • Biopsy Results Call: A member of our clinical team will contact you with the results of your biopsy (this can take up to 2 weeks). Treatment options will be discussed via phone to determine the choice for you.


  • VOB: While you are considering your treatment options or if you decide that IG-SRT is the best treatment option for you, our Billing team will work with your insurance to identify the estimated cost of the procedure. Your verification of benefits (VOB) is based on your specific health insurance.


  • Treatment Decision: Once the VOB is complete, a member of our billing staff will contact you with the estimated cost of the procedure and arrange any payment plans if needed. If you decide to treat with IG-SRT, our Board-Certified Radiation Therapist will call you to schedule your simulation appointment.


  • Simulation: This is the first and longest visit. Your provider will verify the area to be treated. Your radiation therapist will use an ultrasound to determine the size of the area. Based on that initial ultrasound your Radiation Therapist will set up your treatment plan. They will also answer any last-minute questions or concerns you may have.


  • Treatment: All IG-SRT treatments are completed in our office in Portage, by our Board-Certified Radiation Therapist, under the supervision of your dermatologist. A total of 10-15 minutes of your day will be spent in our office, with only an extremely small fraction of that time (about 30 seconds to a little over a minute) being the actual IG-SRT treatment. Each day, your Radiation Therapist will acquire and review your ultrasound with you so you can see the progress of your treatment. Your Dermatologist will visit with you every 5 treatments to review your case and ensure you are well on your way to being cured.


  • Follow Up: After the completion of your treatment, you will follow up with your Radiation Therapist and Dermatologist in about 4-6 weeks to re-evaluate. A close look from your health care provider and an ultrasound acquired at this appointment will help clearly identify the success of your treatment. In rare cases, a boost treatment may be required to help fully resolve your skin cancer.


  • Boost?: A boost is an additional dose of treatment given over a few visits. Although uncommon, the follow up ultrasound may show a possible persisting skin cancer, which would warrant the need for a boost.