Dignity top for radiotherapy

Good morning everyone! I hope you are all keeping well and are getting through this ordeal as smoothly as possible. I hope to start radiotherapy next month and although I know it’s not as brutal as chemo, I’m still quite anxious about lying half naked on a table surrounded by strangers (no matter how lovely they are!) My question is this: has anyone bought or used an adaptable t-shirt for use during the actual treatment? I should be having radiotherapy to my right breast and my sister made me a sleeveless top which opens across the shoulder and down the side so that the material can be folded back to expose the area to be treated, while keeping everything else covered. If we can use a pillowcase to maintain our dignity there shouldn’t be an issue with a ready made garment, I hope. Has anyone worn something similar? I know this might sound trivial to some but I find myself worrying about it nonetheless. :heartpulse:

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I don’t know the answer to your question but when I had my radiotherapy a couple of weeks ago I only had to take one arm out of the gown so one side stayed covered.

I guess the best thing is ask when you have your planning appointment.

Hope all goes well for you

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Thank you, J. That’s good to know x

You get given a gown for radiotherapy at my cancer hospital …i didnt bother …but if i had i wouldnt have had much exposure

I’m not sure if it’s possible to not be exposed after you are on the table as they need to line everything up every time and then check the position. They are very thorough and very professional , usually 2 Radiographers lining up and checking with each other.

Once they are happy with the position your arms will be over your head and they won’t want you to move at that point but they might then be happy to partially cover you if you ask . Xx


I had radiotherapy last July. There were only two women in the room at the start and at the end of radiotherapy and after they lined me up they placed a piece of the paper roll over my breasts (the paper roll they use for the Drs couch) it was all very dignified.

When I had radiotherapy I was given a gown which I kept for the whole of the treatment. I kept my bra on until I was on the table, then I took it off and the gown opened at the right shoulder so my left side was covered at all times. It might be worth enquiring if this is something that happens at your local hospital. Good luck with your treatment.

At my hospital they had special gowns / tops with poppers on each shoulder and down the front. Each patient went into a changing room when arriving at radiotherapy department and put this top on. When you went in for your treatment the radiotherapists put you in position and then undid the poppers. They always made sure I felt comfortable and kept it as dignified as possible. As soon as the treatment was finished they would do the poppers back up before helping me to sit up.
Perhaps you could ring the radiotherapy team before-hand to discuss if you are really anxious? Otherwise, you can ask about the process when you have your planning appointment. Wishing you luck for your treatment x

I find this thread interesting as I’m having my 3 weeks radiotherapy treatment next week. I went for my “rehearsal” yesterday, I found it very undignified when I had to walk almost across a big room half naked to where the machine was with the 2 radiographers watching me!! I felt like I was on a cart walk! I did think that was something wrong in the way things are being done I must say.

This was a real worry for me after surgery as i wasnt comfortable with how i looked myself nevermind showing others. It got me quite upset. I had radiotherapy in Beatson, Glasgow & there were no gowns. I was given a piece of paper to cover myself from changing area (within the room) to table. It had to be removed to line up the tattoos then it went back on during the treatment.
I had asked for female staff & they were able to accommodate. I was lucky as it seemed to be the same team of people that i got so limited to maybe 6/7 people.
Definitely let them know how youre feeling at planning scan and ask about your top.
Good luck

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I don’t think that’s right - there should be something you can cover yourself with . I had a hospital gown on to walk to and from from the table and all the radiographers I saw were female. If they don’t offer you anything wear a stretchy crop top - just make sure there’s no metal in it anywhere and pull it down to your waist once you’re on the table then up again at the end. I bet if you ask they may well find you a gown.

Hope it goes well . Xx

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Hi JoanneN,

It really didn’t feel right. Thank you for the advice m, I will definitely wear a top as you suggest. Thank you. x

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Thank you. The radiographers were female thankfully but it was still uncomfortable for me. I will wear a top/cami which I will pull it up/down.

Thank you x

I was given a gown which has poppers on to enable them to open it for the treatment period itself. I kept that all the way through and gave it back at the end. It’s best to wear separates so you can keep your skirt/trousers on. They check your skin etc for reactions all the way through and need to check there is perfect alignment for each session. Once all the checking is done, they covered me with a piece of medical paper. They do all the poppers up at the end and were very professional.