Patients & Families

Understanding Gamma Knife radiotherapy

The following content contains images and descriptions of cancer treatment that some people may find upsetting or triggering.

Welcome to a new video series by Radiotherapy UK and Amethyst Radiotherapy. The aim of this series is to help prepare you for the experience of Gamma Knife treatment – a type of radiotherapy.

The video below shows each step of the treatment process. There are four additional videos below that with the Amethyst Queen Square treatment team including a therapeutic radiographer, neurosurgeon, clinical oncologist and medical director.

VIDEO: Gamma Knife radiotherapy step-by-step

Helpful information

  • You can add subtitles to the main patient experience video by watching in YouTube and clicking the settings wheel icon in the bottom right-hand corner
  • Download a copy of the video script by clicking the PDF icon at the top of this page
  • Remember that each patient and each treatment plan is different. Your experience may be longer or shorter depending on your diagnosis
  • Depending on your situation, your treatment team may use a head frame to keep you still, or a mask that is made just for you
  • If you are a healthcare professional or take part in patient engagement work, please share this resource with your network


VIDEOS: Meet your treatment team and learn more

Every treatment experience is unique

Here we have tried to give an overview of Gamma Knife radiotherapy. But every patient has a unique experience of treatment and side effects. To help you prepare, we recommend watching all the videos in this series and asking the different members of your team lots of questions. You may want to write down answers or take a friend or family member with you to appointments if you are too overwhelmed to take in information. Some patients have told us that they felt strong emotions when their treatment began. This is completely normal.

With thanks

This video was created by Radiotherapy UK for our PIF TICK accredited Patients and Families hub, launching in 2024. Our special thanks to Amethyst Radiotherapy for welcoming us to the Queen Square centre in London, and to their treatment team for providing in-depth interviews. A huge thank you to Andy, who worked with us to create the video voiceover. Learn more about Andy’s experience of treatment here

Further information

There is so much to learn about Gamma Knife radiotherapy. Below we have included links to some further resources that can support your treatment journey.

Learn more about Amethyst Radiotherapy and the conditions they can treat

Learn more about masks and moulds

Learn more about preparing for cancer treatment, with Jo McNamara

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