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Evaluation of Consultation-Based Rehabilitation for Hospitalized Cancer Patients With Functional Impairment

      Objectives

      To evaluate prospectively the effect of consultation-based interdisciplinary rehabilitation in hospitalized cancer patients.

      Patients and Methods

      Three hundred forty-one hospitalized patients with cancer were referred to the Cancer Adaptation Team (interdisciplinary rehabilitation services) over an 8-month period. Functional status at enrollment and dismissal was evaluated with a Barthel Mobility Index and Karnofsky Performance Status scale. Quality-of-life parameters were evaluated with specifically designed questionnaires.

      Results

      Two hundred ninety patients met the inclusion criteria. One hundred eighty-nine survived and completed the study. Significant functional improvement was observed between enrollment and dismissal on both functional indexes (P<.001). Quality-of-life questionnaires, while limited by low completion rate, showed significant improvement on multiple parameters.

      Conclusion

      Significant functional gains were observed in hospitalized cancer patients who received interdisciplinary rehabilitation services on a consultation basis.
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      Linked Article

      • The Status of Cancer Rehabilitation in the Late 1990s
        Mayo Clinic ProceedingsVol. 74Issue 9
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          A quarter of a century ago, in the early days of Nixon's War on Cancer, the National Cancer Institute provided seminal funding for several cancer rehabilitation programs scattered across the country. These efforts documented the wide array of rehabilitation needs of cancer patients,1 the failure of medical personnel to recognize these needs,2 and the feasibility of rehabilitation interventions for cancer patients.3 By the early 1980s, a variety of models for delivery of cancer rehabilitation services had been identified.
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