Cancer - Specialty Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation is an important component of cancer treatment that is often overlooked. Following surgery, chemotherapy and irradiation, patients are often left with fatigue, scarring and limited range of motion and function. Rehabilitative therapy can help a patient return to a productive and rewarding life.
Specialty Rehab and Women's Health Services is a unique clinic where therapists with different specialties have come together to provide a well-rounded rehab program. One of our areas of specialty is to provide services to patients during and following cancer treatment.
Post-Surgical Breast Rehab
The Post-Surgical Breast rehab program was designed for those who have undergone any type of breast surgery: mastectomy, reconstruction, lumpectomy, biopsy, augmentation or reduction. After surgery and/or radiation, many experience pain, discomfort, weakness or a reduction in range of motion and functional use of the arm(s) due to scarring, soft tissue damage or disuse. Reconstruction following mastectomy can also be painful during the expansion phase. Specialty rehab therapists use a combination of scar mobilization and Myofascial release techniques to help resolve many of these problems. Scar mobilization helps to realign collagen formation into a flexible form that moves more easily with the body's normal motion. Myofascial release is specific, directed, pressure that is applied over time which helps unbind fascia within the body. Even those who underwent surgery many years ago can find relief through this treatment.
Post Radiation Scar and Tissue Therapy
Scar mobilization and Myofascial release technique can also be used successfully in any area where there are restrictions due to surgery or radiation including the neck, throat and face.
Lymphedema is a frequent complication associated with cancer treatment. It is the swelling of the arm(s) and/or leg(s) that results from damage to the lymph system. Although lymphedema has many possible causes, in someone with or recovering from cancer, it usually occurs due to lymph node removal during surgery and/or damage from irradiation therapy. Specialty Rehab therapists treat lymphedema using special massage techniques and wraps to reduce swelling and restore normal arm or leg function. The patient is also instructed in self-massage, exercise and use of a specialized compression garment to continue with independent management after discharge. Without treatment, lymphedema can result in a chronically swollen limb with loss of range of motion and pain. Treated early, however, patients can get and maintain normal use of their arm without swelling and with only minimal management.
Pelvic Muscle Dysfunction Treatment
Treatment for pelvic muscle dysfunction benefits those with problems with urinary and/or fecal control or incontinence. Loss of control can occur with aging and after childbirth or a hysterectomy, but can also occur following prostate, uterine or ovarian cancer. Therapists use a special biofeedback software program to evaluate problems and to track patient's progress. This allows patients to train with immediate feedback and allows therapists to design and progress a customized self-management program. Therapists aslo provide education on anatomy and physiology, lifestyle changes and self-care strategies and techniques to help patients achieve long-term success.