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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Update - a visit to the physical therapist

Yes, I finally was able to get a referral to the physical therapist. She was the same one that spoke to the Head & Neck Cancer support group last summer, so we had a great time visiting. She observed my techniques that I had used to ease the swelling (lymphedema) around my neck, and face, and gave me some additional instructions so I will be more effective in my methods. She also gave me some exercises to do in order to keep the strength and flexibility in my upper body. Since I didn't have additional surgery, I do not have shoulder issues (I think there is a nerve that gets cut if more radical surgery has to be done, which causes shoulder droop), but I do have flexibility issues with my neck. She said that she would talk to anyone about techniques, similar to the group presentation she did last summer, so if you have had surgery, go visit with a physical therapist, even if you haven't received an official referral. I think folks don't know that the physical therapists help with scars and lymphedema, which may be why they don't keep asking to be referred to those professionals. Thanks to the information I received last summer, I have been able to keep my scars soft and flexible, and maintained a minimum amount of swelling. And since swelling hurts, I have eased my pain levels as well.

1 comment:

Stephanie T Goodwin said...

Teresa, you may want to visit a physical therapist who has been certified by Klose Training (you can see the list at:

I have a family member with lymphedema in his leg, and he has lost over 13 inches in one leg so far, and no longer has knee pain. And the therapy is completely pain-free.

Best wishes to you!

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