Ep. 117 – How to Survive Your Board Certification Exam

You’ve been studying for MONTHS – now it’s finally time to take your exam. You know the content for the exam, but what’s your plan for surviving it? In today’s episode, we’re covering what you need to survive your PT board certification exam.

Days leading up to the exam

  1. Print out your test ticket & save a virtual copy to your device.
  2. Practice driving to the test site
  3. Stop studying
  4. Pack all your stuff the night before: snacks, water, ticket, glasses.
  5. Plan your outfit – layers are nice.
  6. Don’t eat anything crazy the night before.
  7. Rest.

Day of the exam

  1. Don’t forget your test ticket.
  2. Grab your stuff & get it into the car.
  3. Get there plenty early.
  4. Take breaks.
  5. Celebrate!

Register for my new FREE workshop, “The 5 Things that Separate Newbies from Competent, Confident OncoPTs.”

Ep. 116 – How this OT is making continuing ed pandemic-proof – Denise Stewart

Over this past year in-person manual therapy training has kind of disappeared. Maybe not entirely, but a pandemic has definitely affected how we teach and learn manual skills.  

So how do we ensure that we are learning these important manual skills when we can’t be in person? How do we guarantee that we’re learning the appropriate touch pressure the spiel of these manual techniques?

Denise Stewart is back on the podcast, sharing how her radical approach to manual therapy education is pandemic-proof and how her course helps OncoPTs get faster, more meaningful results from each treatment session.

Register for the course: https://www.breastandshoulder-rehab.com/online-training

Sign up for the FREE 5 Things that Separate Newbies from Competent, Confident OncoPTs workshop: https://theoncopt.ck.page/5thingsworkshop

Ep. 115 – How to help your whole patient without drowning in the process – Dawn Hogh

We learn how to treat patients after a cancer diagnosis from a PT standpoint – but do we fully consider how other factors impact our patients’ progress?

Yes, they may be participating in sessions, but do they have food, money to cover housing, a safe place to sleep? These factors affect our patients & their ability to live their best lives after a cancer diagnosis.

But how can we possibly address these issues when we have so much on our plate? By not trying to do it all. Community resources & organizations can help our patients & thus our ability to help our plans of care. And we aren’t using them enough, mainly because we don’t know they’re out there.

Dawn Hogh of Cancer CAREpoint explains exactly how these services help patients, how we can help patients access them, & how to find these resources in our own communities. Listen now!

Visit Cancer CAREpoint’s website.

Visit their Facebook.

Dawn’s bio

Dawn has been privileged to be a part of Cancer CAREpoint for the last four years, serving as the Executive Director since March 2020, and previously serving as the Deputy Director and the Director of Development and Marketing. Dawn also served as the Sr. Director, Development and Marketing at Hope Services, and was a member of the Board of Directors and Chair of the Board of Rebuilding Together, Silicon Valley. Prior to moving to the non-profit sector, she spent 25 years in high tech, serving in senior executive positions for a variety of public and private companies. Dawn has a B.A. in Economics and M.S. in Industrial and Operations Engineering, both from the
University of Michigan.

Ep. 114 – APTA-CSM 2021

It’s the most wonderful time of the #OncoPT year! We are so excited for the virtual APTA-CSM 2021 experience, & we’re highlighting some of favorite parts in today’s episode.


Oncology Research Update: A Year in Review – friend of the podcast Lauren Miller (Ep. 32 & Ep. 50) presents here!

Manual Therapy & Exercise for the Management of Upper Quarter Issues in Breast Cancer – friend of the podcast Lisa VanHoose is presenting here!

Platform Presentations

Bite-sized chunks of great research from all kinds of speakers. This year, they are pre-recorded in short videos with access to the pdfs for your enjoyment.


  • Amy Compston – Rotationplasty Rehabilitation Protocol: A Complex Case Report
    • If you want to see Amy present at the Virtual Oncology PT Summit, register here (my affiliate link).
  • Alexandra Hill – Early Rehabilitation for Lymphedema & Brachial Plexopathy due to Metastatic Breast Cancer: A Case Study
  • Chris Wilson – Health Promotion, Wellness, & Prevention Practice in Oncologic Physical Therapy 


  • Academy of Oncologic PT Business Meeting & Celebration of Life – Tuesday, February 9 @ 7:30-9:00pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT Hospice/Palliative Care SIG Meeting – Wednesday, February 10 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT Lymphedema SIG Meeting – Wednesday, February 10 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • APTA Oncology Student & New Professionals Subcommittee – under outside CSM events – Wednesday, February 17 @ 6:30-7:30pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT Pediatric Oncology SIG Meeting – Wednesday, February 17 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT HIV SIG Meeting – Wednesday, February 17 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • Academy of Research – Early Career Researcher SIG Meeting – Thursday, February 18 @ 6:30-7:30pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT Balance & Falls SIG Meeting – Thursday, February 18 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • Academy of Oncologic PT Residency SIG Meeting – Thursday, February 18 @ 7:30-8:30pm
  • PT Proud Meeting – Tuesday, February 23 @ 7-8:30pm

Section & Academy Exhibits

While the Academy of Oncologic PT doesn’t have an exhibit here, many other sections & academies of the APTA have virtual exhibits where you can check out resources, learn about the section & how you can get involved, much like the in-person exhibit hall we’re used to trekking.

Other Fun Stuff

Virtual Yoga with Melodie Daniels – videos available to watch under “Rest & Refresh”

See you around APTA-CSM 2021!

Ep. 113 – How This Global Education Summit Improves Your Patients’ Lives – Denise Stewart

Podcast graphic: headshot of Denise Stewart in a teal square background, on a white square with the title: How This Global Education Summit Improves Your Patients’ Lives

Oncology is full of excited, passionate people who love to educate others, like practitioners or patients. But very few platforms educate BOTH – when we educate both patients & practitioners, we equip all involved parties to be more in tune with what patients need.

Denise Stewart, founder of the Breast Cancer Rehabilitation & Wellness Summit, is my special guest on today’s episode. She discusses how this approach to breast cancer education is improving lives globally & why it’s crucial we have a common educational ground for both practitioners & patients.

Launch Week for the Breast Cancer Rehabilitation & Wellness Summit is February 15-21! Access the content now!

Denise Stewart’s Bio

I am an Occupational Therapist who knows how pain can become a game-changer. It never stopped me thankfully, but it certainly changed how I  have played the game.

As a child, I suffered chronic tonsilitis, which required repeat antibiotics and weeks of bed rest with many days off school. Little did I know then about how antibiotics change gut health and go on to affect the body’s levels of inflammation, potentially for life.

As a young adult, I took the wrong wave at Mooloolaba beach; it was a dumper and I got dumped good and proper; suffering serious low back spine damage. This is when I learned about how hard it is to stand on two feet; one leg would always be looking for another place to be and my low back floated between too straight, too curved and too rotated.

My back pain stayed and stayed and then got worse. I made an awkward landing while jumping a fence when 8 months pregnant. On my defense, this was my first pregnancy and I thought I was Superwoman. Actually, it was more like feeling too tired to walk the distance to the gate.

Back pain seemed to morph into shoulder and arm pain and weakness, which really just would not go away. I blamed baby holding (4 over 8 years)  and working too hard.

Unfortunately, pain, poor sleep, and irritability were my common companions, even though I tried many and varied treatments.

As a young woman, being a wife, a worker, a mother to a young family, and exercising were all important to me.  

I hoped and believed I would find a new positive level of health and wellness.

With extensive research and trialing many new therapies, I finally found a successful multi-pronged treatment approach to manage my chronic pain.

I went on to apply this research and experience to my work- with people who had survived cancer but suffered chronic swelling. In the late 1990s there was no research on non-cancer pain, movement restrictions, and radiation fibrosis, yet each person I saw suffered these things. 

I used chronic pain research principals, new soft tissue treatments coming from elite sports care and the high tech treatments for astronaut recovery to develop low cost and effective treatments for the side effects of cancer treatment.

Today, each person’s program is t’s a multi-pronged approach; a personalized combination of new musculoskeletal and scar treatments, posture + core stability retraining, investigating stress management strategies, restoring gut health, managing food sensitivities and regular self- treatment.