The team of occupational therapists and physiotherapists at RNOH and UCLH specialise in the rehabilitation of children, young people and adults who require orthopaedic surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy following their diagnosis of sarcoma. Rehabilitation is a process of advice, support and treatment, tailor made to each individual to help them recover and adjust to life during and after sarcoma treatment or surgery.

Occupational Therapists have a key role to play in helping patients remain independent in personal and domestic activities of daily living such as washing, dressing and meal preparation. They may suggest new ways of doing things or recommend the use of special equipment after surgery. The occupational therapist can link with local Social Service teams to assess whether any adaptations or equipment are needed at home. In addition Occupational Therapists can support and advise on return to different aspects of life such as work or school, return to driving and return to caring responsibilities. They are also able to advise on methods to help manage symptoms such as fatigue.

Physiotherapists have a key role to play in helping patients regain movement in joints, strengthen muscles and retrain balance allowing people to regain function such as walking or using their arms.  This involves individualised exercise programmes and providing appropriate walking aids such as elbow crutches or sticks. Physiotherapists help people return to an active a lifestyle as possible which can include appropriate leisure and sporting activities.

Depending on the type of rehabilitation required at different stages you may see a physiotherapist or occupational therapist in different settings as an out-patient, in-patient or in the home.

Other Rehabilitation professionals included in the sarcoma team include:

Orthotists provide custom made and off the shelf braces and splints to support joints after different types of sarcoma surgery

Prosthetists assess for and provide artificial limbs if amputation surgery is required.

If you have any questions regarding rehabilitation or how you will manage after surgery please contact us.