Cancer Rehabilitation: Overview of Functional Problems in Patients with Cancer and Implications for Rehabilitation Interventions

Course Instructor

Mary-Ann Dalzell, MSc, Pht
Ms. Mary-Ann Dalzell is clinical director of the Rehabilitation & Exercise Oncology Program (REOP) at the Segal Cancer Center in Montreal. As clinician and research associate for the Young Adult Program, she has been profiling functional disabilities and studying exercise interventions in young adults with cancer. She has been teaching Cancer Rehabilitation (2003-2011) at the School of Physical and Occupational Therapy, McGill and was co-founder and Associate Director of the McGill Cancer Nutrition-Rehabilitation Program from 2002 to 2006. She is principle investigator in a study of residual functional problems related to radiotherapy in young breast cancer survivors. This study has been supported by grants from the Physiotherapy and Cure Foundations. She has been co-investigator in Grants received from the Canadian Institute of Heath Research (CIHR) on:

  1. prognostic factors related to muscle wasting in advanced lung and gastrointestinal cancers
  2. autonomic insufficiency in patients with advanced cancers and;
  3. exercise interventions in patients with lymphedema.

She has been member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association, the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada and the Sports Medicine and Science Council of Canada.

Dates and Schedule

Day 1 - February 1, 2013

  • Introduction & overview of cancer pathology: Staging, growth, metastasis, and treatment protocols
  • Cancer pain, hematological issues, and neurological problems related to the disease and treatment

Coffee Break

  • Cancer fatigue
  • Metabolic and muscular problems: Cachexia anorexia, effects of Corticosteroid
  • Radiation Fibrosis and specific articular problems related to cancer treatment


  • Management of bone metastasis
  • Lymphedema

Coffee break

  • The “Clinical Picture”: discussion and questions

a) Patients on treatment
b) Patients who recently completed their treatment
c) Patients on long term follow-up

Day 2 - February 2, 2013

  • Framework for assessment & decision–making
  • Biophysical modalities in patients with cancer: Guidelines for use based upon the stage of disease and physiological mechanisms underlying their effectiveness

Coffee Break

  • Exercise interventions: literature review
  • Psychosocial context


  • 3 Case studies

a) Objectives of treatment
b) Focus on clinical assessment
c) Choosing appropriate treatment interventions

Day 3 - February 3, 2013

  • Breast cancer: Rehab following surgery, treatment and reconstruction
  • Rehabilitation of lung cancer patients
  • Head and neck cancers: Rehabilitation following surgery and reconstruction

Coffee break

  • Young adult cancers(ages 18 to 40): unique issues related to treatment
  • Gynacological cancers & gastro intestinal cancers
  • Hematological cancers: Rehabilitation interventions including post bone marrow and stem cell transplantation

Lunch break

  • Case Studies: “Putting it all together”

a) Exercise interventions in advanced cancer patients: practical review of testing, positioning patients and exercise progressions
b) Treatment protocols for peripheral neuropathy
c) Bone metastasis: How to prevent fracture

Course Open To

Course will be open to:

  • Physiotherapist
  • Physiotherapy Students
  • Physiotherapy Assistants
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Nurses


109 Copper Road
(next to Alpine Vet clinic)
Whitehorse, YT


Registration at 8am

Friday/Saturday 8:30-4:30

Sunday 8:30-3:30


Oncology Division member $560

CPA members $610

Non Members $710

Course certificates will be distributed at the completion of the seminar. Receipts will be distributed via email. Includes course materials and refreshments at breaks.

Early Registration Deadline

January 1st, 2013

Late registration fee: 20$

How To Register

Please fax/mail or email the registration form to:

Cecilia Fraser
109 Copper Rd
Whitehorse, YT
Y1A 2Z7
FAX: 393-6953

Make cheques payable to: Oncology Division

Paypal option available. Visit

Questions and More Information

For further questions please contact: Oncology Division at

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