Breast Reconstruction Rehabilitation

Post-Surgical Breast Physical Therapy

Following breast surgery, tissue dysfunction can occur affecting shoulder, neck, chest wall, and upper extremity mobility. Common impairments can lead to postural compensations, muscular tightness, tissue restrictions and/or nerve tension. Musculoskeletal impairments such as loss of strength, limited joint and soft tissue mobility can lead to functional deficits and pain during daily activities. Physical therapy after surgery can accelerate the healing process, restore muscle and tissue integrity to enhance the recovery process and limit the obstacles.

Below are some examples of post-surgical challenges:

  • Scar sensitivity/pain
  • Limited shoulder range of motion
  • Neck/shoulder/rib pain
  • Numbness/tingling to upper extremity
  • Inability to return to regular exercise
  • Loss of strength and endurance

During the initial visit, a physical therapy assessment and comprehensive evaluation will be taken to identify the root musculoskeletal and neuromuscular causes of symptoms and associated limitations. Shoulder, trunk and upper extremity tissue mobility will be assessed along with scars, breathing patterns, posture, joint range, and muscle strength. Then an individual treatment plan will be created with specific patient centered goals which may include:

  • Postural training
  • Proper scar education and care
  • Connective tissue treatment throughout shoulder, neck and trunk
  • Nerve glides
  • Myofascial release
  • Breathing, stretching, and strengthening exercises

It is gold standard to undergo physical therapy after orthopedic surgeries, and it should be the same standard for breast surgeries. Rehabilitation and healing can be a daunting process alone. Let our expert Physical Therapists help in rehabilitation after breast surgeries. Please contact us with any questions or to have your patients schedule and appointment.

 
It is gold standard to undergo physical therapy after orthopedic surgeries, and it should be the same standard for breast surgeries.
— Julie Sarton, Sarton PT