PERSONALIZED - SPECIALIZED - ONE-ON-ONE CANCER CARE
Forté Rehabilitation and Wellness Center is recognized as an integral member of the oncology team and enjoys strong, collaborative relationships with local medical, radiation, and surgical oncologists, nurse navigators and community support organizations. Through this team approach, Forté patients can be assured that they are receiving the best rehabilitation available as they continue through all phases of their cancer journey.
Our therapists are certified in cancer rehabilitation through the PORi Institute, a cancer rehabilitation curriculum that combines a deep understanding of the physiological impact of cancer and related treatments on the body with the practical clinical skill set needed to treat this unique and complex patient population.
At Forté, our therapists understand the unique problems associated with a cancer diagnosis and know how to work with a patient’s limitations while going through cancer treatment. Our patients are guided through each therapy session with sensitivity, skill, knowledge, and compassion. All sessions are one-on-one with a licensed therapist to ensure our patients are having their everchanging symptoms addressed during each and every session.
Some chemotherapy agents can cause problems such as fatigue, heart damage, neuropathy, loss of balance, difficulty walking, stiffness, and weakness that may lead to loss of function. Most people will develop some functional decline during the course of chemotherapy treatments; and although some patients experience a timely recovery from chemotherapy, many have lasting detrimental effects for months or even years. The complexities of chemotherapy agents and the effects on the body can be difficult to overcome without the professional help of a physical therapist. The therapists at Forté have the expertise to help manage symptoms and restore optimal function during and in the years following chemotherapy treatments.
Pain is a common problem of cancer treatment and can come from many sources that may be alleviated with physical therapy such as joint pain, muscle soreness, spasms, and radiation fibrosis. Many cancer pain syndromes happen when our body’s movement patterns are disrupted by treatment, especially after surgery or radiation. This leads to stress on soft tissues, joints, and muscles. Our therapists help differentiate between this and other pain that may require referral for further medical evaluation. Once a thorough assessment is completed, the therapist will design a program to:
- Control and reduce the pain
- Correct the source of the pain
- Restore function
Lymphedema is swelling in a limb that occurs after cancer treatment because of damage to the lymphatic system either through surgery, radiation, or other treatments. Lymphedema occurs in approximately 30% of patients who have undergone mastectomy and the risk increases with radiation treatment. The rate of lymphedema is similar for other oncologic conditions requiring surgery and radiation. This can cause deformity, heaviness, difficulty fitting into clothing, loss of function, and psychological distress. Early detection and early intervention from a licensed physical or occupational therapist with experience managing this disorder is key to successful management long term. Patients do best with early education and a rehabilitation evaluation prior to surgery or radiation therapy for cancer treatment. If lymphedema develops, early treatment at Forté can help to reduce and control the swelling. There are also a number of surgeries that can help reduce lymphedema. Forté works with lymphedema surgeons to create and carry out a rehabilitation plan that helps to achieve optimal surgical results. To learn more about lymphedema click here.
It is highly recommended that newly diagnosed cancer patients align with Forté prior to starting cancer treatment. Recent studies have shown that prehabilitation with a licensed rehabilitation therapist can reduce pain and anxiety, maintain optimal function, reduce the risk of lymphedema, and help people tolerate the cancer treatment regimen. Prehabilitation at Forté will provide services such as:
- Baseline functional status
- Strength and ROM assessment
- Lymphedema assessment
- Education regarding symptom management
- Therapeutic exercises to maintain function and reduce fatigue during chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation
- Plan of care to intervene at critical treatment points:
- Before surgery and radiation
- After surgery
- During and after chemotherapy
- During and after radiation
Functional Movement Restoration
Many people experience loss of motion after cancer surgery. Sometimes this loss of motion can interfere with daily activities such as cooking, playing sports, bathing, dressing, walking, and driving. Common reasons cancer patients experience loss of motion are:
Pelvic Floor Rehabilitation
When people suffer from pelvic cancers such as prostate, testicular, ovarian, uterine, or bladder cancer, the effects of treatment can be daunting. Some effects of treatment include:
- Pain with intercourse
- Chronic pelvic pain
- Scarring and fibrosis
- Lymphedema of the abdomen, perineum or legs
- Body image impairments
- Psychological distress
Forté Rehabilitation & Wellness center is dedicated to improving the quality of life for cancer patients by providing excellent comprehensive physical rehabilitation to individuals who are suffering from cancer or the effects of cancer treatment.