Receiving physical therapy after undergoing breast cancer surgery could help reduce the risk of lymphedema and help patients return to their normal activities faster, physicians suggest in a news story from US News & World Report.
Researchers are learning more about the lymphatic system, what causes lymphedema and potentially how to ward it off. Physical therapy after surgery for breast cancer is often part of the solution, but physical therapy after breast cancer surgery is about more than just reducing the risk of lymphedema, says Debbie Mattera, a doctor of physical therapy and a clinical specialist in lymphedema at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.
“It’s basically to allow patients to return to the function they had prior to their surgery and their diagnosis. We want to get them moving. We want to make sure they understand what their limitations are and what the precautions are and how to understand what’s normal and what’s not normal in terms of what they feel,” she says.