Top 25 Radiation Therapists Interview Questions
1. How do you deal with patients who are especially weak or run down due to chemotherapy?
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Ryan Brown
Founder of Mockquestions.com
 
Contributing Author
Elisabeth Walter
HR Consultant
Radiation Therapists
February 27th, 2014

Radiation therapy is used to treat cancer in the human body. As part of a medical radiation oncology team, radiation therapists use machines called linear accelerators to administer radiation treatment to patients. Linear accelerators are most commonly used in a procedure called external beam therapy, which projects high-energy X rays at targeted cancer cells. As the X rays collide with human tissue, they produce highly energized ions that can shrink and eliminate cancerous tumors. Radiation therapy is sometimes used as the sole treatment for cancer, but it is usually used in conjunction with chemotherapy or surgery.
bls.gov/oco/ocos299.htm
Radiation Therapists Interview Questions
2 of 10
What does palliative treatment mean?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I would ask the patient if they were uncomfortable. I would probe to see if the forms were the issue. I would also ask them if they were nervous and try to calm there anxieties by going through the procedure and what they should expect during the treatment.
 
2.
I would consult with my senior as the whether or not it would be appropriate to give the patient their treatment. If we could not come to a decision we would consult the doctor in charge and ask if he was happy for the patient to be treated. I would not treat the patient if I was not confident that the patient would not be in danger if we decided to treat.
 
3.
Use of masks, molds or casts to sit the patient still and straight prior to treatment. Can talk to them before treatment to try and ease them and relax them.
 
4.
Calm the patient down, allow them to breath, offer some water and take your time with them.
 
5.
Try to look at what immobilisation aids could be used to change their position and thus facilitate treatment.
 
Question
3 of 10
If a patient cannot sit still during treatment, or prior to treatment, what would you do?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I would ask the patient if they were uncomfortable. I would probe to see if the forms were the issue. I would also ask them if they were nervous and try to calm there anxieties by going through the procedure and what they should expect during the treatment.
 
2.
I would consult with my senior as the whether or not it would be appropriate to give the patient their treatment. If we could not come to a decision we would consult the doctor in charge and ask if he was happy for the patient to be treated. I would not treat the patient if I was not confident that the patient would not be in danger if we decided to treat.
 
3.
Use of masks, molds or casts to sit the patient still and straight prior to treatment. Can talk to them before treatment to try and ease them and relax them.
 
4.
Calm the patient down, allow them to breath, offer some water and take your time with them.
 
5.
Try to look at what immobilisation aids could be used to change their position and thus facilitate treatment.
 
Question
4 of 10
Tell me about a time when you had to be very careful in communicating delicate information.
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Get help from the planning team and also try to find consultant for clarity before treating.
 
2.
As a senior for calcification or follow up with the RO to determine exactly what they were after and why that is so that I can better understand that treat method/ rational.
 
3.
If I was unsure of the treatment plan, I would contact the oncologist to get clarification.
 
4.
I would approach the planning team would produced the plan and ask them to explain it to me. If they were unsure I would approach the oncologist. I would never treat if I was unsure why or what I was doing.
 
5.
I would speak to one of my colleagues, if not see my seniors or superintendent. If am still not satisfied, I would go back to the radiation oncologist to discuss the plan.
 
Question
5 of 10
How has radiation therapy affected cancer patients from your experience?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Patients have been diagnosed with some form of cancer and radiation therapy is a non invasive procedure that kills specifically targeted tissue.
 
2.
Radiation therapy is a local treatment that is either prescribed as a palliative approach or a curative.
 
3.
Patients receive radiation therapy to kill cancer cells and to help relieve pain.
 
4.
As part of their treatment regime. Curative intent or palliative intent. Benefit outweighs the risk. Improve survival, reduce rates of recurrence, prophylactically, manage pain or attempt to halt disease progression, debulk tumour prior to surgery.
 
5.
They receive radiotherapy to help kill or control the spread of the cancer cells, to reduce chances of remission and hope to cure the patient of the disease.
 
Question
6 of 10
Why is it important that the patient remain in the same position during each treatment?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
To ensure correct amount of dose is getting to the tumours and dose to normal tissue is minimised.
 
2.
Because radiation therapy involves targeting specific cells and in order to maintain accuracy, the exact position needs to be reproduced in every therapy session.
 
3.
It is important as radiotherapy is targeted and precise to particular target volume to the milimetere. And if patient moves then normal tissue may also be exposed and goes againt ALARP optimisation as set by the IRMERE
 
4.
A patients plan has been produced with them in an exact position that they were in when they were CT scanned. If we do to reproduce this position i. E. Because the patient is moving, the accuracy is reduced and the chance of missing the target volume and irradiating healthy tissue is increased.
 
5.
To ensure that the beams are targeting the tumour everday and not the healthy tissues.
 
Question
7 of 10
Can you explain to me how radiation therapy kills cancer cells?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
The radiation kills the cancer cells by damaging the dna of the cell and making it unreproducable.
 
2.
It uses high energy X rays to interact with body tissue to produce ions which kill the tumor cell. Both electrons and photons can be used depending on the depth of the tumor.
 
3.
Attack the DNA molecules in the cancer cells and destroy the cell.
 
4.
High does radiation breaks the bond the the cancerous cell, this can be a single bond break or a double bond break dependent on the event of interaction. As treatment is given to the patient at a fixed interval, i. E every day, the cancerous cell will not be able to recover as quick as the damage.
 
5.
By disrupting the DNA structure and prevengting growth in the cell cycle stage of division.
 
Question
8 of 10
Are you a team player?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I have always been able to fit easily in teams at both placement and casual work. It is great to work in a team with a shared goal. I have seen many relationships with Radiation Oncologists and I think the key is continual communication and respect for each others roles and what each person brings to the team.
 
2.
I consider my team work skills my best quality, throughout my life have always been a team member, specifically through team sports, choirs and music, and within other workplaces. My guidance from the RO is appreciated and by using the ideas of several people to attain a goal is deeply satisfying.
 
3.
I really enjoy working as part of a team and consider myself a team player. i have had really good relationships with oncologists during my time as a student.
 
4.
Teamwork is essential to radiation therapy. I enjoy the team environment and the contribution all MDT members have to providing patients with the best possible care. Enjoyable and social work environment built on trust and respect. Good communication. RO provides great opportunity to increase my knowledge and skills as an RT and good relationship with RO improves patient care.
 
5.
I very much enjoy working with a team. Teams provide support and provides a platform for problem solving involving other perspectives.
 
Question
9 of 10
How do you deal with stress?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I am genreally very strong mineded and do not get very stressed but I play football regularly and keep active in the gym. Also I like to just relax and home and get away from work.
 
2.
Stress can actually produce a rush of adrenaline that keeps me on my toes. I am very good at multitasking and when stressful moments occur, I asses the situation and prioritize what needs to be accomplished first.
 
3.
I deal with stress by keeping calm and removing myself from a situation where I feel I may not be able to handle.
 
4.
I like to exercise and go to the gym. I also have a close network of friends and family who are there for me when I am finding things tough. I also like to read.
 
5.
I try to solve the issue which is causing me stress by reflecting upon the situation and creating an action plan for future references.
 
Question
10 of 10
Why did you choose a career in radiology?
 
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I really care about helping patients and building trusting rapport with them. I have lost my best friend, surrogate mother and two family members to cancer. I could not be there for those people, but I can be there for my patients.
 
2.
I have experienced first hand how difficult it can be and so I have real care for patients and there families.
 
3.
I suppose the financial benefits are a minor incentive, the real aspect of the job or any is helping [atients and being genuine in doing so.
 
4.
The financial benefits where a bonus. The main reason I am going for this job is for the people, there are many people with cancer who require treatment and being able to deliver the treatment and at least help one person is the reason I opted fro radiation therapy.
 
5.
Definitely about caring for patients. I believe by working as a radiation therapist is rewardable. You make a difference in the lives of people and it is such a noble deed being able to give someone a chance to get their life back.
 
Contributing Author
Elisabeth Walter
HR Consultant
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