You are currently viewing Volume 1/Issue 3 – August 2021

Volume 1/Issue 3 – August 2021

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Exercise guidelines for cancer survivors

American College of Sports Medicine recommends 2-3x/week for 20-30 min per session of moderate aerobic exercise plus 2x/week of resistance training 2 sets of 8-15 reps for major muscle groups. Exercise is an important part in preventing cancer recurrence. Ribbons PT can instruct patients in an individualized exercise program that can be performed at home or in a community gym. Not every exercise is appropriate for every patient much the same as not every medication is appropriate for every patient. Let us help your patients develop an exercise program in a safe manner where we can monitor for problems such as development of lymphedema or limited range of motion due to radiation fibrosis.

Reference: exercise guidelines

Welcome Mary Beth Street, OTR/L, CLT

Mary Beth Street joined our staff in March. Mary Beth was born and raised in Kingsport, TN. She pursued a career in occupational therapy after observing the profession’s holistic approach of treatment while working at an acute inpatient rehabilitation hospital. Mary Beth attended Milligan College and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science in 2014 and a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy degree in 2016. After graduation, Mary Beth moved to Knoxville, TN and specialized in inpatient neurorehabilitation. She later moved to Dayton, Ohio, and worked with the pediatric population. Mary Beth returned to the Kingsport area in November of 2020 with her husband and two dogs. She is now excited to provide occupational therapy services within the cancer population. She enjoys traveling, hiking, kayaking, and spending time with her nephews and nieces.

Reagan and Mary Beth achieve Certified Lymphedema Therapist Status

Reagan Penix, PTA, CLT and Mary Beth Street, OTR/L, CLT now proudly bear certified lymphedema therapist status. Reagan and Mary Beth both completed an intensive 135-hour certification course through the Academy of Lymphatic Studies on June 13, 2021. Ribbons PT now proudly employs 3 certified lymphedema therapists thus decreasing long wait times for appointments for patients affected by lymphedema. We are aware that the quicker lymphedema is treated, the better the outcome and we are now able to meet your patient’s needs in a more timely manner.

Prehabilitation in Head and Neck Cancer survivors

Lymphedema is seen in 50% of head and neck cancer patients. Unfortunately, it is not always recognized in this population. In addition to developing lymphedema, head and neck cancer survivors are often limited in neck range of motion and shoulder range of motion. Prehabilitation is a term used to describe rehab intervention before a procedure is performed. Research has shown that if head and neck cancer survivors are referred to physical or occupational therapy at the time of cancer diagnosis, survivors can be monitored for development of these side effects when they first develop, requiring less treatment intervention and result in survivors having a more positive outcome with less limiting side effects. Ribbons PT can monitor for development of lymphedema and loss of range of motion intervening with treatments such as manual lymphatic drainage, application of compression garments, range of motion exercises, soft tissue mobilization to minimize or prevent radiation fibrosis, and/or cold laser treatments to assist with improving soft tissue mobility. Patients can be assessed before or shortly after radiation/chemo begins for screening and education, then followed up for a reassessment after completing radiation/chemo for screening for development of any deficits.

Ridner SH, Doersam J, Galford E. An update on lymphedema of the head and neck. Published April-June 2015.
Sember A et al. Prehabilitation for lymphedema in head and neck cancer patients at a community cancer center. JCSO. 2017;15(3):e127-e134 | 10.12788/jcso.0345

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