Category: Functioning and Disability
This is a cross-sectional study to evaluate the effects of RF on H&NC survivors' function and QoL. Our Physiatry team developed a comprehensive physical and functional exam to quantitatively evaluate H&NC patients.
To participate, the patient must be in remission and have received radiation >1 year prior to enrollment as treatment for a primary H&N mucosal squamous cell carcinoma or a salivary gland cancer. Subjects with traumatic neck or shoulder musculoskeletal pathology within 2 years of the treatment were excluded.
Participants attended a Cancer Rehabilitation appointment, where a Board-Certified Physiatrist performed a standardized PE, with emphasis on a comprehensive neuromusculoskeletal exam.
There are no data for the benefit of physiatry services in H&NC patients. Our findings demonstrate the disease and treatment related morbidity on the musculoskeletal system in H&NC patients. Post-radiotherapy evaluation, treatment and management by a physiatrist is instrumental to optimize function and QoL. This study represents the first step in creating a comprehensive, collaborative and multidisciplinary program to diagnose, treat and manage RF in H&NC patients.
Laura Huang– Assistant Professor, University of Miami
Diana Molinares– Cancer Rehabilitation Medicine Director/assistant Professor, University of Miami/Sylvester Cancer Center/Jackson Memorial Hospital
Stuart Samuels– Assistant Professor, University of Miami