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Publication Date

8-13-2014

Keywords

cancer, fatigue, rehabilitation, radiation, chemotherapy physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, exercise

Abstract

Medical management for malignant neoplastic diseases includes surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and hormonal and biological therapies. Each of these antineoplastic interventions has unique impacts on physiological, musculoskeletal and functional performance. Cancer rehabilitation is the area of physical medicine responsible for addressing impairments associated with cancer treatment and survivorship, advanced disease and end of life. Although it is expected that more than one-half of persons being treated for cancer will suffer moderate pain and physical and functional decline, and that most will describe fatigue, referrals to rehabilitation are traditionally low. Evidence suggests that referrals to rehabilitation before, during and after treatment for neoplastic disease may improve physiological and functional performance, quality of life and survival outcomes. Oncology practitioners are encouraged to refer patients undergoing cancer treatment to a rehabilitation professional at the peridiagnosis period.

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