Monday 16 December 2013

Life as a Cancer Survivor Poses Physical and Emotional Challenges - Wall Street Journal

Cancer Survivorship Care Programs Integrate the Body, Mind and Soul of the Survivor

Cancer rehabilitation services in Canada are rarely received, although they are needed as much as in the US
Cancer physiotherapy, emotional aid and plans for treatment follow-up are becoming the norm at a number of hospitals and community cancer centers in the US where survivorship care programs have an integrated approach that takes care of the body, mind and soul of the survivor. Unfortunately in Canada, these rehabilitation services are still rarely received, although they are needed just the same. (see Oncology Rehabilitation Provision and Practice Patterns Across Canada, Canestro et al, Physio Canada, 2013)

As reported in The Next Front in Cancer Care at the Wall Street Journal, "Chemotherapy and radiation can damage vital organs such as the heart and liver, possibly causing secondary diseases years later. The body can be debilitated, cognitive functions impaired and emotions distressed, making return to normal life and work difficult. Some 70% of cancer survivors experience depression at some point. Patients have higher levels of anxiety years after the disease is cured." The focus of treatment is on curing the cancer, but often there is no care provided for the side effects that occur as a result of the cancer treatment.

Cancer Rehab Canada feels the same rehabilitation services should be offered to Canadians who are living with cancer, whether their impairments are physical or psychological in nature. We have a long way to go to provide the same array of services available to many Americans, but we are working hard to build the same level of rehab care for all Canadian cancer survivorships.

Read the full Wall Street Journal article.

To find a Cancer Rehab Canada near you, visit the list of British ColumbiaSaskatchewanOntario, or Nova Scotia locations.


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