Radiation Therapy

Radiation Therapy

Oncology Rehab specializes in rehabilitation for patients who are currently going through, or who have gone through, radiation therapy. Our knowledge and techniques facilitate treatment to any or all areas of the body – the head and neck region, the trunk region, the arms, the pelvic region, and the legs.

Why is Treatment Important During Radiation Therapy?

During radiation therapy, there is often tissue trauma, as well as inflammation of the tissues. Local inflammation eventually leads to the formation of scar tissue, which can then cause feelings of tissue tightness and loss of mobility and flexibility in the area of radiation –

  • In the head and neck region, this can lead to difficulties with neck, facial, and jaw movements
  • In the arms and upper body this can lead to range of motion difficulties and postural difficulties
  • In the legs and lower body this can lead to range of motion difficulties, as well as functional difficulties with walking, running, balance, etc.
When is the Best time to Start Physical Therapy Treatment?

The best time to start physical therapy treatment is during the early stages of radiation therapy. This will help reduce local inflammation and, the more the inflammation is reduced by physical therapy, the less scar tissue fibrosis there will be further along in the healing process.

At Oncology Rehab we work with your radiation therapy schedule and arrange your physical therapy treatments accordingly so that you can accommodate both sets of appointments in the most efficient and timely way.

What if it has been Months or Years Since Receiving Radiation Therapy?

Physical Therapy is still extremely important. It is never too late to start. Physical therapy is very beneficial in helping restore tissue mobility, tissue flexibility, range of motion, strength, and good return of postural control so as to restore function to all affected areas of the body.

What Are the Rehabilitative Goals During/After Radiation Therapy?

Brianna Kearney, MSPT, CLT – Working on Patient Post Radiation

There are many goals, including the following:

  • Promoting Healing of Skin and Delicate Tissues
  • Reducing Scar Tissue Formation
  • Minimizing Pain, Swelling and Inflammation
  • Improving Range of Motion
  • Improving Postural Return
  • Maximizing Mobility
  • Maximizing Functional Return to Exercise, Hobbies, and Social/Occupational Life