One of my students recently shared that their mom is cancer-free. And the whole class clapped & cheered.
Damn, that felt good.
One of the coolest things we do as PTs is to help patients navigate the “after cancer” experience. But we have a lot to learn about this side of the diagnosis.
Dr. Eric Galvez, PT is a brain tumor thriver & advocate who has traveled the world to serve young adult & brain tumor survivors. In addition to the TWO books he’s authored, he’s also serving as the membership chair for APTA Oncology Balance & Falls SIG & spearheading the upcoming PT Day of Service balance & falls screening event (which you should definitely participate in!).
Eric & I talked about his treatment, his rehab experience (as a patient in his own facility), & what PTs need to know about patients living beyond brain tumors.
Read Eric’s blog
Want to get involved with PT Day of Service? Email Eric to participate in the APTA Oncology balance & falls screening event!
Dr. Galvez graduated from the University of Michigan – Flint in 2003. The allure of perfect weather and numerous outdoor activities in San Diego drew him to the west coast. On September 10th 2005, he was told he had a huge brain tumor, a meningioma the size of a golf ball, on the tentorial membrane at the base of the brain between the brain stem and cerebellum. In the following months: He had brain surgery to have the tumor removed; radiation therapy to get rid of the remains; Speech, occupational, and physical therapy for all the physical and cognitive impairments he was left with after the surgery. He was receiving rehab at the hospital where he used to work. His coworkers were now treating him as a patient!
During his recovery, he has led a team that raised over $11,000 for the National Brain Tumor Foundation, wrote/published a ground breaking book about his experiences as a young brain tumor patient and healthcare professional, created a support network for young adult survivors, led the development of a website designed to empower cancer/brain tumor patients, organized national book tours/speaking engagements, wrote a second book, traveled the world promoting post-treatment oncology thrivership with fellow young adult cancer survivors, and is currently getting reinvolved in the physical therapy profession through both: APTA ONCOLOGY, Balance and Falls SIG as the Membership Director AND as a volunteer website manager for the World Physiotherapy Subgroup: IPT-HOPE (International Physiotherapist for HIV/AIDS, Oncologic, and Paliative Care Empowerment)