October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month! Breast cancer is a disease where the cells located in the breast grow uncontrollably and is the most common cancer among women in the United States.1 240,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women and 2,100 cases are diagnosed in men each year in the United States.1 Surgery is a common component for women diagnosed with breast cancer.2 Two common types of surgery for breast cancer is breast-conserving surgery and mastectomy.2 Breast-conserving surgery is to remove all of the breast tissue that contains cancerous tissue.2 Mastectomy is surgery to remove the entire breast including all of the breast tissue and some nearby tissue.2 Most patients who undergo breast cancer surgery will not need physical therapy.3 However, some patients may experience decreased range of motion due to pain or tightness, weakness, and lymphedema.3 Physical therapists can help you or loved one after breast cancer surgery in the following ways.
The impairments seen after breast cancer surgery can negatively impact your ability to function in everyday life and participate fully in all the activities you love. Physical therapists are the perfect healthcare providers to help improve range of motion, reduce pain, and decrease swelling after surgery. Contact us today for a free consultation!
1CDC Breast Cancer. Basic information about breast cancer. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Published September 14, 2020. https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/breast/basic_info/index.htm#:~:text=Each%20year%20in%20the%20United
2Surgery for Breast Cancer | Breast Cancer Treatment. www.cancer.org. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/types/breast-cancer/treatment/surgery-for-breast-cancer.html
4Coping with pain after breast surgery. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/mastectomy/expert-answers/pain-after-breast-surgery/faq-20058049
5Breast Cancer: Lymphedema After Treatment. www.hopkinsmedicine.org. Published June 23, 2022. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/breast-cancer/breast-cancer-lymphedema-after-treatment#:~:text=Lymphedema%20is%20a%20problem%20that