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Gamma Knife Radiosurgery: After Treatment

You can go home the same day as the Gamma Knife procedure and return to normal activities shortly after. However, the effects of the radiation may not be noticeable right away and could take several weeks to fully develop. Your care team will continue to guide you through the next steps.

Follow-up appointment

After your treatment, your doctor will schedule a follow-up appointment to check your progress and ensure that the treatment was successful. 

You may need to complete imaging tests before your follow-up appointment. We use imaging to check the effectiveness of your treatment.  

At your follow-up appointment, the advanced care provider and your doctor will discuss the results of any tests as well as any symptoms you’re experiencing.  

Side effects of Gamma Knife radiosurgery

Side effects can occur after Gamma Knife treatment and vary from person to person. Not all patients will have these side effects. Your care team will talk to you about the possible side effects of your treatment and can help you manage your symptoms as needed.  

Some possible side effects include:

  • Fatigue: You may feel more tired than usual for a few weeks after Gamma Knife treatment. This is a common side effect of radiation treatment and usually gets better over time. Exercising daily can give you more energy. 
  • Headaches: You may get a headache after Gamma Knife treatment. Use over-the-counter pain medication or medication prescribed by your doctor, if necessary.
  • Nausea and vomiting: You may experience nausea and vomiting after Gamma Knife treatment, which can be treated with medication.
  • Hair loss: Hair loss near the treatment areas can be a temporary side effect after treatment. This hair typically grows back quickly. 
  • Swelling: Swelling in the area treated with Gamma Knife is possible. This can cause temporary changes in brain function that usually improve over time.
  • Other potential side effects: In some cases, Gamma Knife treatment may cause skin irritation, changes in appetite or changes in the ability to taste or smell.

When to call your doctor

If you experience side effects after Gamma Knife treatment, let your care team know. They may be able to help. You can always send a message to your doctor or Gamma Knife coordinator through MyAtriumHealth.

Call your doctor or seek medical care right away if you have:

  • Severe headache that is not helped by pain medication
  • Any new or worsening weakness, numbness or vision problems 
  • Seizures