Helpful Stretches after Gynecologic Cancer Treatment
Andrea Branas, MSE, MPT, Andrea Cheville, MD, Lora Packel, M.S.P.T.
The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Last Modified: September 8, 2002
Copyright © 2002 by the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission in writing from the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania
The following exercises are to help you regain your normal flexibility of the trunk, pelvis and hips after your surgery or radiation treatment. Check with your doctor, nurse or physical therapist before beginning these exercises!
- If you are experiencing significant pain, discontinue exercises and notify your doctor or nurse.
- If your abdomen, groin or legs become swollen after these exercises, contact your doctor, nurse or physical therapist.
- After your surgery, it may take up to 6 months to recover full motion in the abdominal and pelvic region.
- The best way to approach these exercises is to work gradually, increasing your motion in small steps.
- It may be helpful to do exercises when your muscles are warm, such as after a bath or shower. DO NOT use a heating pad in the abdominal/pelvic area
- After surgery or radiation you may have tightness in you abdomen, groin and hip(s). This is normal. Completing these stretches will help to alleviate this tightness.
- Exercise in front of a mirror to keep your correct posture and motion.
- Be sure to breathe during your exercises. You may not realize that you are holding your breath.
- Try to lie on a firm surface when doing the exercises (the floor is preferable to the bed or couch). This will help you stabilize as you stretch.
- You will have restrictions with lifting and activity after your surgery. Your doctor will let you know when you may resume your previous activity level.
- These exercises are designed to serve as a guide to increase flexibility of the trunk and pelvic region. Start gradually and work up to the recommendations below.
|Exercise 1 of 5: Deep Diaphragmatic Breathing
|Exercise 2 of 5: Prone Lying
|Exercise 3 of 5: Lower Trunk Rotation
|Exercise 4 of 5: Groin Stretch
|Exercise 5 of 5: Gluteal and Lower Trunk Stretch