Jefferson University Hospitals

Preparing for Your Visit

If you decide to receive your radiation therapy at the Bodine Center for Radiation Therapy/Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson, you'll need to know about registration and the CT simulation process.

After your consultation appointment, talk with your physician to schedule your CT simulation treatment planning procedure. If you need to reach your physician, call 215-955-6702.

You should plan to be at the Bodine Center for your CT simulation appointment for approximately 1 to 3 hours.

A CT simulation is a specialized CT scan that helps your physician know where your tumor is located. Contrast or dye may or may not be given before your CT simulation.

The CT scan you will receive during your simulation is different than a diagnostic CT scan, because it is used specifically by your radiation therapy team to create a treatment plan that is customized just for you.

About the Registration Process

  • When you arrive for your CT simulation appointment, you will come to the front desk in the Bodine Center for Radiation Therapy.
  • The front desk staff will direct you to the registrar, who will record your insurance information, collect referrals (if required) and co-payments at this time.
  • After the registrar receives all the information we need, you will be directed to take the elevator to the 'B' level for your CT simulation appointment.
  • When you arrive on the 'B' level, you will go to the reception area.
  • The receptionist on the 'B' level will verify your name and date of birth.
  • A barcode will printed for you, which you will need to bring to ALL of your radiation therapy appointments. This barcode is used for identification purposes.
  • After the receptionist hands you your barcode, you will be given your changing instructions, shown the changing area and then directed to the nurses' station.

About CT Simulation

  • After you've arrived at the nurses' station, a nurse will ask for your name and date of birth.
  • At this time, the nurse will check if your consent for radiation treatments is signed. If not, the nurse will call your physician to explain the consent and ask for your signature.
  • If you have questions about your radiation treatment, you may be able to speak with your physician before your CT simulation appointment.
  • After your signature on the consent form is verified, the radiation therapists will greet you, ask your name and date of birth and escort you to the CT treatment planning room.
  • A digital picture will be taken of your face for identification purposes.
  • Sometimes, your physician will give the therapist an order to make a positioning or custom mold for you. This will be used during your daily treatments. If a device is needed, the therapist will make it at this time and explain how it is made and why it is being used.
  • Sometimes additional therapy team members may be called in to check the positioning device. The therapist will introduce these team members to you.
  • The therapist will help position you on the CT table.
  • If your physician requires you to have a CT scan with contrast, you will be given a questionnaire to see if you can have the dye. Contrast is dye that is used to show the physician where the tumor is located.
  • The therapist will tell you when the CT scan is ready to start and then you will be asked to leave the room.
  • The CT scan will begin. It is quick and painless.
  • Afterwards, photos will be taken of the treatment area and small marks will be made on your body to identify the area of treatment. These photos and marks ensure the therapist will position you correctly for your daily treatments.
  • Next, the therapist will help you off of the CT table.
  • If you have any questions, the therapist or your physician will be able to answer them for you.
  • The therapist will then work with you to schedule your next appointment, which will be a trial run of your treatment plan. This trial run is also called port filming.
  • The trial run appointment is made for certain times on specific days, depending on your physician's schedule.
  • Between your CT simulation and trial run appointment, your radiation therapy team members work together to create a personalized treatment plan for you.
  • In most cases, after your trial run is complete and approved by your physician, you will schedule your regular treatment appointment time with your therapists.
  • If anything at all is unclear to you, please ask our staff and they will do their best to answer your questions.

Preparing for your appointment is the best way to assure that you have a visit that is as successful and productive as possible. You will need to set aside a certain amount of time for the visit and allow for a number of steps.

Download the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson Patient Packet (PDF).

The following may help make your appointment at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson go smoothly:

  • Arrive 30 minutes early so that you have time to complete any needed paperwork.
  • Have knowledge about your medical and family history and/or bring the completed health questionnaire which may have been sent to you. This information will help us care for you.
  • Bring a list of your current medications and allergies.
  • Have your insurance information, including your insurance card with ID number and group number and prescription plan information.
  • Bring referrals from your primary care provider if your insurance requires.
  • Be prepared to pay any in-office co-payments necessary.
  • Bring any relevant radiologic images (x-rays, ultrasounds, PET, CT, MRI, bone scans and others- in either film or CD-ROM format) and pathology slides and their written reports.
  • Bring a pen and paper to take notes and written questions you would like to ask.
  • If you have one, bring a copy of your advance directive. Download a living will document (PDF).
  • Download the forms you will need to fill out and bring with you (PDF).