Mary’s Story

Mary Barnhart is a breast cancer surgeon in Portland, Oregon. She spends her days working with women who have been diagnosed with cancer, consulting them on post-surgical treatment options and dietary changes that can benefit their overall health.

Through the years, particularly as a general surgeon, Mary has come to see the damage that conventional, less precise forms of radiation therapy can incur. The knowledge has led her to become highly suspicious of radiation therapy as an option. So, when Mary was herself diagnosed with endometrial cancer, she did everything in her power to avoid radiation treatments. Her doctor eventually convinced Mary to meet with two radiation oncologists, both of whom introduced her to the concept of IMRT, which started to make much more sense than the whole abdominal radiation blasts that she was familiar with. Between her scientific mind and passion to live, Mary began to realize IMRT was the right thing to do. She chose a doctor and was set to begin treatments the following week.

Mary was told that she would have to abandon her vegan diet due to severe diarrhea that could occur during treatment. Rightfully concerned over this lifestyle change, she spent much of the weekend researching radiation diets online. That’s when she stumbled upon The video below captures Mary’s story of finding the right treatment option, at the right time.

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Important Safety Statement: Most side effects of radiotherapy, including radiotherapy delivered with Accuray systems, are mild and temporary, often involving fatigue, nausea, and skin irritation. Side effects can be severe, however, leading to pain, alterations in normal body functions (for example, urinary or salivary function), deterioration of quality of life, permanent injury and even death. Side effects can occur during or shortly after radiation treatment or in the months and years following radiation. The nature and severity of side effects depend on many factors, including the size and location of the treated tumor, the treatment technique (for example, the radiation dose), the patient’s general medical condition, to name a few. For more details about the side effects of your radiation therapy, and if treatment with an Accuray product is right for you, ask your doctor.