Oncology Rehabilitation for soft tissue sarcoma
Throughout your soft tissue sarcoma treatment, our oncology rehabilitation therapists are available to work with you and your care team to help improve your physical functioning, energy level and sense of well-being.
Additional oncology rehabilitation therapies for soft tissue sarcoma may include:
- Prosthesis and/or mobility changes: Our rehabilitation therapists may help you relearn tasks and adjust to performing activities in a new way. Though amputation is rare for soft tissue sarcoma treatment, our oncology rehabilitation team may help you master the use of your prosthesis, and assist you in resuming normal activities if this is part of your treatment plan.
- Scar tissue therapy: Surgery for soft tissue sarcoma may result in scar tissue, which tends to be inflexible and uncomfortable. We may perform scar and myofascial rehabilitation following sarcoma surgery to help decrease pain and discomfort and increase mobility.
- Lymphedema management: Some soft tissue sarcoma treatments may lead to chronic swelling of an extremity, known as lymphedema. To deal with this discomfort, your physical therapist may recommend various strategies designed to help alleviate the swelling and pain.
- ReBuilder: Chemotherapy for soft tissue sarcoma may cause peripheral neuropathy (numbness, pain and tingling in certain areas of the body). This approach involves an electronic stimulation to the area of neuropathy, such as the hands or feet, and may help improve abnormal sensations.
We also provide an educational component to help you understand the physical and psychological benefits of physical restoration, and to help prepare you and your family for continuing the program at home.
What is oncology rehabilitation?
Oncology rehabilitation includes a wide range of therapies designed to help you build strength and endurance, regain independence, reduce stress and maintain the energy to participate in daily activities that are important to you. Here are the rehabilitation therapies we offer patients:
Physical therapy: As part of your cancer treatment, our physical therapists may help you design an individualized exercise program that combines range-of-motion training with light resistance exercises. These therapeutic exercises aim to reduce fatigue and improve physical function, safety and well-being.
Occupational therapy: Our occupational therapists are available to help you with daily living activities that are important to your routine and quality of life, such as dressing, showering and eating.
Speech and language pathology: Many cancer patients may benefit from speech and language pathology. Therapists address problems you may be experiencing, including dry mouth, difficulty swallowing, loss of voice and cognitive changes that often result from cancer treatment.
Manual therapy: Our massage therapists may offer techniques designed to help reduce your cancer-related pain and improve your quality of life during your cancer treatment. Some manual therapy options include:
- Traditional massage
- Stone therapy
- Myofacial release
- Soft-tissue manipulation with passive stretching
- Effleurage massage
- Trigger point therapy
- Chiropractic care
Our chiropractors perform adjustments designed to address bone, muscle or joint pain without the use of drugs or surgery. Chiropractic care may also help to relieve symptoms such as neuropathy, nausea and headaches.
Auriculotherapy: This painless, non-invasive form of oncology rehabilitation stimulates the auricle of your external ear to help alleviate side effects of your cancer treatment, such as pain, nausea or fatigue.
ReBuilder: This therapy may be recommended if you experience peripheral neuropathy, a condition that causes pain, numbness, tingling or loss of reflexes in the hands and arms or legs and feet. ReBuilder is designed to increase tactile sensory and awareness with electronic stimulation to the affected area.
Lymphedema prevention and treatment: Lymphedema occurs when fluid collects in tissue and causes swelling. Our oncology rehabilitation team provides various non-surgical options to prevent lymphedema or reduce the swelling associated with it. After non-surgical therapeutic approaches have been exhausted, we may also recommend surgical options to treat lymphedema.
Additional services and programs: We offer several additional services and programs that are designed to promote recovery and improve your quality of life after radiation therapy, surgery or drug-based treatments. They include:
- Programs to address sexuality concerns
- Programs to address incontinence
- Weight management/movement program
- Healthy lifestyle coaching
- Support for fatigue and sleep disturbances
Experienced care team
Rehabilitation therapists are an important part of our care teams. With experience in all of the above treatment options, these therapists may offer a variety of services to help you manage side effects and improve your quality of life. Our therapists include licensed physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech pathologists.
Personalized treatment approach
We personalize treatment plans to the individual based on each person’s goals and experiences. Your care team would help you decide which oncology rehabilitation therapies may help achieve your goals. You may have one or more of the above therapies during the course of your treatment.