What the radiation does is it damages the DNA, or genetic material, contained in cancer cells. This prevents cancer cells from multiplying, and eventually, they start to die off.
While radiotherapy isn’t typically used in cases of leukemia, it is used if the cancer cells have spread to other parts of the body, such as the brain, lungs, and kidneys. Just like chemotherapy, it can also cause side effects such as fatigue, weakness, nausea, hair loss, etc.
Immunotherapy is a way to treat leukemia that uses the body’s immune system. This takes advantage of chemicals known as immune checkpoint inhibitors, which essentially puts your immune system into overdrive.
Normally, the immune system has checkpoints, which prevent it from attacking the body’s own cells that also includes cancer cells. When a person is given immune checkpoint inhibitors, the immune system is now able to attack cancer cells.
Immunotherapy is also used to prevent a person from relapsing, because it strengthens the body’s protection against future cancer.