Women’s Health

Breast Cancer Recovery Program

Having breast cancer can be an overwhelming emotional and physical experience. Healthy Focus Physical Therapy offers skills and knowledge to help you get back to what you were doing before surgery. Women often accept pain and limited mobility that linger after surgery and radiation, but even years later physical therapy can make a change in reducing these symptoms.

Why Physical Therapy?

• To promote healing after surgery
• To combat the effects of chemotherapy and radiation
• To recover shoulder range of motion
• To resolve axillary web cording
• To recover from nerve damage or post mastectomy pain syndrome
• To prevent lymphedema
• To prevent and reverse posture changes
• To learn self-management skills
• To begin the journey to fitness recovery

“The changes Julie’s techniques are able to effect are light years beyond everything else I’ve tried in two years. After 3 sessions Julie was able to restore lost flexibility and range of motion, to release constantly spasming muscle groups, and to relieve neuralgic pain to the extent that I could reduce my narcotic intake.”

Pelvic Floor Disorders

Weak and deconditioned pelvic floor muscles cause loss of bladder or bowel control and affect sexual function. If these muscles are too tight or in spasm it may lead to bladder or pelvis pain, pain with intercourse, constipation, or bladder urgency or frequency.

Pelvic Pain

Pelvic pain occurs in men and women. It has many causes, but is often related to pelvic floor muscles that are too tight and sometimes in spasm. This describes all of the following diagnoses: vulvodynia, levator ani syndrome, pelvic floor tension myalgia, vaginismus, anismus, coccydynia, sphincter dyssynergia, pelvic floor spasm, and shortened pelvic floor. Irritation, inflammation, or compression of the pudendal nerve in the pelvis is called pudendal neuralgia or pudendal neuropathy, which causes pain in sitting. Vaginismus is a muscle spasm that prevents the penis entering during intercourse. Falls on the tailbone are common causes of pelvic pain; but joint misalignments of the pelvis, which are common during pregnancy, can also cause pelvic pain; as well as muscle strain that occurs during pregnancy as the uterus grows, putting stress on the pelvic and hip joints which are loose because of hormonal changes.

Post-Surgical Scars and Adhesions

Operations are very common and may lead to restrictions in mobility. Specific to the pelvis, post-op scarring or adhesions that develop may contribute to hip, groin, pelvis, or abdominal pain with a loss of everyday function.

Pregnancy and Postpartum Recovery

The body undergoes tremendous changes with pregnancy, so some aches and pains are normal. Pain that does not go away or prevents normal daily activities is not normal. If symptoms disrupt your ability to sleep, walk, and function, seek physical therapy treatment for help.

Recovery from child birth requires specific exercise to strengthen the abdominals and pelvic floor muscles. Physical therapy offers help to reduce the effects of C-section scarring. Awareness of good posture, body mechanics, and prompt management of back and pelvic pain will speed up fitness recovery. If there are any misalignments in the pelvis, these should be corrected as soon as possible. It is important to return to a healthy level of fitness following pregnancy.