Early diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer-related lymphedema by a physical therapist can significantly reduce costs and the need for intensive rehabilitation, according to an article published in the January issue of PTJ.
The study, led by APTA member Nicole Stout, PT, MPT, CLT-LANA, compared a prospective surveillance model with a traditional model of impairment-based care and examined the direct treatment costs associated with each program. Treatment and supply costs were estimated based on the Medicare 2009 physician fee schedule. Researchers estimated that treatment for breast cancer-related lymphedema costs $636.19 a year when the prospective surveillance model was used vs $3,124.92 for traditional treatment of advanced lymphedema.
Read more about the study in APTA's press release.