Conformal Radiation Therapy

ECHS Recognised Hospital for Cancer in Mohali
Conformal radiation therapy is a type of external beam radiation therapy. For this procedure, the same type of machine used for regular radiotherapy treatment is combined with a specialized device called a multi-leaf collimator.
  • The multi-leaf collimator is made up of metal bars fixed to the radiotherapy machine.
  • The bars block the radiation beams to change the shape of the area being treated.
  • Each bar can be adjusted so that the radiation beams conform to the shape and size of the tumour.
Conformal radiation may also aim the radiation beams from several directions to better target the tumour and spare more of the nearby structures than conventional radiation therapy.


Conformal radiation therapy allows higher doses of radiation to be given to the tumour. The surrounding normal tissue receives less radiation, which lessens the chances of side effects. Conformal radiation is used to treat many cancers. It is especially useful if the tumour is close to important organs or body structures because high doses of radiation can be given with little risk to healthy tissue.


Computed tomography (CT) scans or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are used to create a precise 3-dimensional (3-D) image of the tumour. The exact shape of the tumour is programmed into a computer and used to plan radiation treatment. The computer model of the tumour is used to set the multi-leaf collimators so the radiation beams match the shape of the tumour.