Therapy with open radioactive sources

Targeted radiotherapy using tumour-seeking radiopharmaceuticals has been employed for almost half a century. The radiopharmaceuti-cal should have specific affinity for tumour tissue with a high target-to-background ratio and long retention time; the radiation emitted by the radioisotope should be sufficiently energetic for a therapeutic effect, but be absorbed over a short distance to irradiate the tumour target only. Some of the clinically useful radiopharmaceuticals for therapy are 1311,89Sr, 32P, 186Re, 153Sm, and 90Y.

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