If you receive a breast cancer diagnosis, doctors at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center play an integral role in your ongoing care. Men who have been treated for breast cancer are encouraged to attend follow-up visits on a schedule determined by their doctors.
Mammograms or ultrasounds are typically scheduled every 6 to 12 months after treatment. Your doctor may also recommend that you perform a monthly breast self-exam to help detect a possible recurrence early. The exam involves checking the appearance of your breasts in a mirror for skin puckering, dimples, or other changes. It also requires lying down and examining your breasts with your fingers for any lumps and squeezing the nipples to check for any discharge. NYU Langone doctors can explain how to perform a breast self-exam correctly.
Neuropathy, or nerve damage, is a common side effect of some chemotherapy drugs used to treat breast cancer. It may lead to numbness, tingling, pain, and weakness in the hands, feet, arms, legs, or other parts of the body.
Doctors at NYU Langone’s Rusk Rehabilitation can prescribe medication to help ease the discomfort caused by neuropathy. They may also recommend physical therapy to prevent the condition from interfering with your balance and strength.
Men may experience partial relief from neuropathy symptoms after receiving acupuncture or massage therapy. These and other integrative health services are available at Perlmutter Cancer Center.
Surgery for breast cancer often involves removing lymph nodes, which may damage lymph vessels in the breast and underarm. These vessels carry lymph fluid, which contains bacteria and waste products, away from the body’s organs and tissues. Damage to these vessels can cause lymph fluid to build up, leading to swelling and arm discomfort—a condition known as lymphedema.
Doctors and physical therapists at Rusk Rehabilitation can show you how to prevent lymphedema after surgery. They may recommend, for instance, wearing wraps around your arms to compress them. Doctors also ensure that you’re aware of the early warning signs of the condition, such as aching, tingling, or a feeling of fullness in the underarms, arms, or hands. Early treatment is the key to managing lymphedema.
Physical therapy often includes range-of-motion and flexibility exercises. This is usually followed by specialized massage therapy to help drain lymph fluid.
Supportive and Integrative Care
Supportive care specialists at Perlmutter Cancer Center provide therapy for any ongoing cancer-related or treatment-related symptoms, such as pain, fatigue, loss of appetite, or stress, helping improve quality of life.
Integrative therapies, including massage therapy and acupuncture, can often help men with breast cancer feel better during and after treatment. Massage therapy can help reduce pain, decrease stress, and improve mood. Acupuncture may relieve treatment-related fatigue, nausea, vomiting, hot flashes, and pain.
Yoga classes tailored to the needs of people with breast cancer are also available at Perlmutter Cancer Center. They can help reduce stress and fatigue.
Nutrition and Exercise
NYU Langone doctors encourage you to eat healthfully throughout breast cancer treatment. Registered oncology dietitians at Perlmutter Cancer Center offer nutrition counseling and can help develop a customized diet plan that’s right for you.
After you’ve had a consultation with doctors at Rusk Rehabilitation, physical therapists can design a program of strength and aerobic exercise to address any weakness and fatigue caused by breast cancer or its treatments.
NYU Langone specialists offer psychological support, which can help you cope with any concerns or anxiety that may arise during and after treatment. Our experts provide individual counseling sessions and support groups for people with breast cancer.
Genetic Counseling and Testing
Your doctor may recommend testing for mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes based on your medical history or family history. Testing services are also available to other family members who may be at risk for these mutations.
NYU Langone’s genetic counselors provide assistance for men who are concerned about a family or personal history of breast cancer and what it might mean for other family members.
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