Monday, November 9, 2009

A Five Star Program - Cancer Transitions Moving Beyond Treatment

Tonight is the last night of the Cancer Transitions - Moving Beyond Treatment program offered at the Cancer Institute of NJ ( CINJ). Cancer Transitions - Moving Beyond Treatment is a partnership effort between the Wellness Community and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. It is meant to support and educate cancer patients during the transition period following treatment. It began in 2006 and participants have been evaluating and improving it ever since.

My evaluation of the program is 5 Stars.

I highly recommend this program.I have been involved in many different types of programs specifically for ovarian cancer survivors. This program is open to survivors of all types of cancer. And that is why I think this program is especially strong. It is applicable to all survivors - those who have had surgery, those who have had chemo and those who have had radiation or any combination thereof. Topics during the past few weeks included Taking Control of Survivorship, Exercise for Wellness, Emotional Health and Well-Being, Nutrition Beyond Cancer , Medical Management Beyond Cancer and Life Beyond Cancer.

Each week I came home with a piece of information or technique that I could use on my own path of survivorship. The exercise component was incredibly helpful. I walk almost every day but my upper body strength had gotten pretty weak over the past year during my treatment for a recurrence. Rita Musanti, a nurse and our Fitness Instructor, was able to show me exercises to build arm and shoulder strength. Her knowledge of the type of surgery I had allowed her to recommend exercises that would tone my abdominal muscles without causing injury. Last weeks presentation by Marlene McGuire, RN, discussed our awareness of side effects of treatment. In a discussion about neuropathy, I learned that the pain and tingling I feel in my left foot may be intensifying as the weather gets colder. It makes sense but I never heard anyone tell me that might be the case.

So a big thanks go out to all the presenters, and to Ellen Levine , Wellness Community of Central NJ and Julie Murphy, CINJ, for their efforts in making the program available to survivors here in NJ and for offering their insights into the emotional health of cancer survivors.


Every Day is a Blessing!

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