gms | German Medical Science

27th German Cancer Congress Berlin 2006

German Cancer Society (Frankfurt/M.)

22. - 26.03.2006, Berlin

Rehabilitation needs and goals in the oncological rehabilitation of breast cancer patients

Meeting Abstract

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27. Deutscher Krebskongress. Berlin, 22.-26.03.2006. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2006. DocIS047

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: March 20, 2006

© 2006 Heim.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Breasr cancer is the most frequent female malignancy in Germany and can be followed by numerous disease- and treatment-related functional deficits and substantial disability.Disorders of body structure, body functioning, activities and participation such as restricted range of motion in the shoulder, pain, weakness, fatigue, depression, anxiety, symptoms of hormonal ablation, and social withdrawal can impair the quality of life considerably. Secondary lymphedema can affect up to 30% of breast cancer patients after local surgical and radiation treatment. Resulting disability may be minimized by initiating medical rehabilitation as soon as possible.The first step of the rehabilitation cycle is the assessment of functional impairments and disabilities and the definition of treatment goals and appropriate follow-up tests. Rehabilitative goals are multidimensional and include somatic, functional, psycho-social, mental, and educative goals. Patients are assigned to a complex rehabilitation program with individualized interventions. The results of the treatment are monitored and evaluated to make adaptation of interventions possible. In addition the initiation of vocational rehabilitation is a major task for the pension insurance financed rehabilitation. Results of case control studies, cohorts, and randomized controlled trials demonstrate the effectiveness of breast cancer rehabilitation. Examples for evidence-based rehabilitation are given.