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Outpatient Services Guide
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Mailing Address:
The Valley Hospital
223 N. Van Dien Avenue
Ridgewood, NJ 07450

Occupational Therapy for Post-Surgical
Breast Surgery Patients


Following breast surgery, patients may experience stiffness, tightness and pain in the upper body, as well as loss of flexibility, strength and range of motion in the shoulder.

These surgical after-effects can lead to decreased function, meaning simple tasks such as picking up a child, trying to reach a shelf, driving, dressing or bathing, once accomplished effortlessly, may now be difficult.

Since 1995, Valley's Occupational Therapy Department has offered services to patients after their breast surgery, specifically to patients who have undergone mastectomies, lumpectomies, axillary dissections, reconstructive surgeries and other procedures.

Our licensed, highly trained therapists use a holistic approach that incorporates mind, body, and spirit in assessing and treating patients. With a clear understanding of the patient's goals and concerns, a therapist will plan an individualized program, enabling the patient to regain independence and re-establish the lifestyle enjoyed prior to surgery.

The sooner one begins occupational therapy, the better the results. It's best to start before stiffness sets in and diminishes the ability to function.

Treatment may include, but is not limited to, instruction in shoulder and trunk exercises that increase range of motion, flexibility, and strength; education in reducing pain and tightness in the arm and chest wall; and help with performing daily activities. Designed with a focus on individual needs, these exercises can be modified to meet a patient's unique lifestyle goals.

Valley's occupational therapists educate post-surgical breast patients about precautions after surgery. They offer information and ways to avoid injury and infection. If you have continuous or unusual swelling, we recommend that you consult with your physician.

For more information, please call 201-447-8131.

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