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Holistic Cancer Support and Care

From nutrition to emotional support, these 6 people can help you during cancer treatment

Your Physical Therapist: Preserving Strength During Cancer Care

Cancer -- and its treatment -- can really knock you off your feet. But if you’re laid up and inactive for too long, you rapidly lose muscle strength. So consider adding a physical therapist to your cancer support team. Muscle weakness can delay your recovery and make it more difficult. Physical therapists can help you keep up your strength during treatment and get you back up to speed afterward.

Cancer and cancer treatment can also cause physical changes that you’ll need to adjust to. For instance, if you have surgery, you may need special exercises to rebuild your muscle strength afterward. If your doctor doesn’t suggest physical therapy, ask about it. Also, check to see if your health insurance covers physical therapy during or after cancer treatment.  

The Key to Cancer Support: Asking for Help

Of course, you may not see all of these experts. Depending on your case, you may only need to see a few. But if you’re about to start treatment -- and are feeling alone and afraid -- it’s important to know the types of cancer support that are out there if you need them.

“Remember that you’re not alone,” says Burstein. “My patients always tell me that the more you seek out help, the better help you get.” All you have to do is ask.

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Reviewed on April 23, 2009

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