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Sunrise Centre oncology prehab credited for fitness turnaround

Tuesday, 15 June 2021

Drysdale woman Sandra Cox credits her post-cancer recovery to the Sunrise Centre staff who knew just how hard to push her while training to improve her fitness.

In April, Sandra had surgery for cancer of the gastro-oesophageal junction and was told she needed to improve her fitness to have the best possible recovery from her procedure.

While she had an active lifestyle previously, she said neoadjuvant chemo-radiation had taken a toll on her body.

“After four weeks of the prehabilitation program at the Sunrise Centre, the anaesthetist couldn’t believe how much I had improved,” she said.

“They said the fitter I am, the better I am going to handle the surgery. I’m home right now and should still be in hospital. It’s usually a 16-day stay, but I was home after 11 days.

“I’ve done the hard work, but the Sunrise Centre staff pushed me and knew what I needed, so I give them credit for it.

“I’ve got an exercise bike at home, but it’s completely different to a controlled environment where they can push you and they know how hard to push you so you have a safety net.”

Sandra said she planned to return to the Sunrise Centre program for her post-surgery rehabilitation.

“I’m going back to concentrate on different needs, with an eight-week program to get me back up for day-to-day living.

“Being able to get back to work is my next goal and the Sunrise Centre will be a big part of that.

“I think there should be more people pushed to go there because there’s so much they can do for you.”