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Physical Therapy in Oncology

Physical Therapy plays an important role in oncology care by addressing the physical and functional limitations that can arise from cancer and its treatments. Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital and Research Institute have the finest care and experts to take care of the patients based on their treatment process in physical therapy and rehabilitation. We are well-known for our success rate, where the process is made easier with the consultation and guidance of the expert team.

Here are some key aspects of physical therapy in oncology:-


Physical therapists provide prehabilitation services to patients before they undergo cancer treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy. Prehabilitation aims to optimize physical function, strength, and endurance prior to treatment, which can help patients better tolerate and recover from the upcoming interventions.

Rehabilitation after surgery:

Physical therapy is often prescribed after cancer-related surgeries to aid in recovery and restore functional abilities. The therapist may guide patients through exercises and activities to improve range of motion, strength, and mobility in the affected area. For example, following breast cancer surgery, physical therapy can help with regaining arm and shoulder movement.

Lymphedema management:

Lymphedema is a common side effect of cancer treatment, particularly when lymph nodes are removed or damaged. Physical therapists with specialized training in lymphedema management can provide manual lymphatic drainage, compression therapy, exercise programs, and education on self-care techniques to help reduce swelling and improve quality of life.

Pain management:

Cancer-related pain can significantly impact a patient’s well-being. Physical therapists can employ various techniques such as therapeutic exercises, manual therapy, electrical stimulation, and heat/cold therapy to help manage pain and improve function. They may also provide guidance on relaxation techniques and home exercises to manage pain between therapy sessions.

Fatigue management:

Cancer-related fatigue is a prevalent symptom that can persist long after treatment. Physical therapists can design individualized exercise programs to address fatigue and gradually increase endurance and energy levels. They may also provide education on energy conservation techniques and pacing strategies to help patients better manage their daily activities.

Balance and Coordination:

Certain cancer treatments and metastases can affect balance and coordination, increasing the risk of falls. Physical therapists can assess these issues and develop specific interventions to improve balance, gait, and coordination, thereby reducing the risk of falls and enhancing safety.

Overall physical conditioning:

Physical therapy can help patients maintain or improve their overall physical conditioning during and after cancer treatment. This can include cardiovascular exercises, strength training, flexibility exercises, and functional training to enhance endurance, strength, and overall fitness.

It’s important to note that physical therapy in oncology is highly individualized, and the specific interventions and goals will vary depending on the patient’s unique needs, cancer type, treatment stage, and any existing medical conditions.

At Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital and Research Institute, our physical therapists work closely with the oncology care team to develop a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to each patient’s specific situation.