Who provides rehabilitation services for cancer survivors?

When you're seeking rehabilitation services after cancer treatment, it's important that you look for health care providers with experience treating cancer patients, says palliative medicine specialist Dr. Stewart Fleishman. Learn how to find such specialists by watching the video.

Rehabilitation services may be prescribed by any medical or osteopathic doctor including an oncologist, primary care physician, or physiatrist. The medical specialty of rehabilitation medicine is led by physiatrists who are medical doctors who have specialized in rehabilitation. Physiatrists go through medical school as well as at least four more years of training to specialize in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

Physiatrists diagnose and treat pain and work to restore the highest possible level of functioning following a loss through illness, injury or disability. Physiatrists provide non-surgical treatments and also work on prevention. Some have expertise in oncology rehabilitation and work with cancer survivors to help them heal during and after cancer treatments.

Many other types of health care professionals also provide rehabilitation services including occupational and physical therapists, rehabilitation nurses, speech therapists, vocational rehabilitation specialists, therapeutic recreational therapists, registered dietitians, orthotists, prosthetists, mental health therapists, and case managers.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.