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 also provide education on
anatomy and physiology, lifestyle changes and self-care
strategies and techniques to help patients achieve long-term