Recovering from Breast Cancer? Find Healing in Physical Therapy
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and National Physical Therapy month. When it comes to breast cancer, recovery therapy is just as important as treatment. About one third of the women that undergo auxiliary lymph dissection during breast cancer treatment will develop lymphedema, a swelling in the arms caused by damage to the lymph nodes. Physical therapy is one possible solution to this post-treatment complication.
Treatment for lymphedema will vary depending on the severity of the condition. If the swelling is mild, it may include the use of compression garments, exercise, and elevation to encourage lymph flow. In more severe cases, your therapist may use manual lymphatic drainage, a technique that uses light massage to improve flow and compression bandaging to reduce swelling. A physical therapist will help you understand what exercises, compression garments, and skin care are best for you, and you will be able to care for yourself easier over time.
In many cases the symptoms of lymphedema can be reduced and alleviated through physical therapy. In some cases, physical therapy during treatment may prove to be preventative.
At Mid America Rehab, our experienced and skilled physical therapists have advanced training in lymphedema management and other women's health care treatments. Contact us today for a free consultation at any of our four convenient locations and learn more about how Mid America Rehab can help you heal.