At Weill Cornell Medicine, we understand that treatments for cancer like chemotherapy, radiation and surgery have led to more people surviving, but we also understand that cancer and its treatments can sometimes cause physical, psychological and cognitive challenges. As a result, some find it difficult to enjoy daily activities or return to work which can negatively impact your quality of life.
The cancer rehabilitation specialists at Weill Cornell Medicine are here to help. With our compassionate care, you can live fully —optimizing your function and decreasing your pain — during and after your cancer treatment.
At Weill Cornell Medicine, our cancer rehabilitation specialists aim to improve patients’ quality of life using a holistic, empathetic and patient-centric approach. We use holistic cancer treatments, also called complementary or alternative cancer treatments, in conjunction with conventional treatments to address both the physical and emotional needs of our patients.
The goal of cancer rehabilitation is to:
● Help you stay as active as possible
● Help you continue to work and participate in family activities
● Lessen the side effects and symptoms of the cancer and its treatment
● Help improve or maintain your ability to live independently for as long as possible
● Improve your quality of life
Convenient, individualized care: Our highly trained rehabilitation physicians will work with you and your cancer care team during treatment, follow-up care and throughout survivorship to develop your individualized treatment plan which includes a thorough review of your prior medical, surgical and radiation treatments, if any. This comprehensive, collaborative care maximizes your recovery and optimizes your quality of life.
Focus on empowering patients: We are passionate about educating our patients. We empower you with information, exercises and other tools so that you can manage and improve your overall health, as well as make confident decisions about your care.
Multidisciplinary care from leading experts: When you choose Weill Cornell Medicine, you have access to a network of doctors and specialists. Your cancer rehabilitation specialist may consult with your cancer care team, as well as experts in physical and occupational therapy, nutrition and other medical professionals, as needed.
Weill Cornell Medicine partners with NewYork-Presbyterian, one of the top hospital systems in New York City and the U.S.
Our team helps patients suffering from physical or mobility issues as a result of all types of cancer or cancer treatments, such as:
● Skin changes from radiation therapy
● Chemotherapy-induced neuropathy (a painful pins-and-needles sensation)
● Lymphedema, severe swelling
● Oral mucositis, or mouth sores, which can lead to problems swallowing or chewing food and difficulty speaking
● Difficulty getting out of a chair or walking
● Balance issues
● Muscle aches and joint pains
● Physical disabilities interfering with work or other activities
At Weill Cornell Medicine, our cancer rehabilitation team uses innovative, noninvasive technologies to diagnose and treat lymphedema (swelling) in early stages, address speech and swallowing difficulties and help you regain strength and mobility to the highest degree possible. These treatments may include:
● Lymphedema management: While lymphedema cannot be cured, it can be effectively managed with manual lymphatic system drainage, therapeutic exercises, compression, skin and nail care, and diet. Thanks to advances in medical technology and increased awareness of this condition, the risk of lymphedema stemming from cancer treatments is on the decline.
● Diet and nutrition counseling: A Weill Cornell Medicine clinical dietitian can help you identify your nutrition goals. Eating well while you’re being treated for cancer may help you better tolerate the side effects of cancer treatment, lower your risk of infections and recover faster.
● Integrative support: Integrating evidence-based complementary and alternative cancer treatments with the treatments you receive from your oncologist may help relieve many of the symptoms associated with cancer and its treatment. The Weill Cornell Medicine Integrative Health and Wellbeing Program offers acupuncture, massage therapy, yoga, mindfulness coaching and meditation.
● Medication therapy: Medications may be used to treat pain, infection or inflammation due to cancer treatments.
● Ultrasound-guided injections: Therapeutic injections may be used to treat pain, infections or inflammation due to cancer treatments.
● Exercise regime: Regular exercise may improve cancer-related fatigue, improve your functional health, improve your emotional health and help you feel stronger and more energetic.
Whether you visit us virtually through a video visit or you see us in person, you can be assured that we will deliver the highest standards of care with compassion.
The physicians at the Weill Cornell Department of Rehabilitation Medicine offer patients the highest level of safety and care. As a top-ranked academic medical center, you have access to our extensive network of specialists who provide seamless care throughout your treatment — to promote long-term physical and mental health.