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Support services

North Star Lodge provides a range of services to support your cancer journey.

Pain management

At North Star Lodge, it is our goal to keep you comfortable during your treatment. Treating and controlling your pain is a primary concern. There are many options available for pain relief. Consult your doctor or nurse about your pain—they will likely be able to explain the cause and prescribe a treatment specifically for you.

When describing pain for your doctor or nurse, be as specific as you can about what you are experiencing. These words may help you describe your pain: nagging, dull ache, stabbing, burning, squeezing, cutting, tingling, shooting, pressing, flickering, itching, sharp, stinging, pricking, rushing, pinching, pulsing, gnawing, boring or cramping.

There are complementary treatments that, when combined with pain medications, may help control your pain. These include heat or cold packs, massage, pressure and vibration, exercise, repositioning, immobilization of painful area, and relaxation, just to name a few.

Learn more by visiting Water's Edge: Memorial's Pain Relief Institute.

Lymphedema therapy

Now located at Lakeview.

Our licensed therapists and their highly trained staff specialize in preserving the strength and mobility of patients with cancer and other diseases. They also provide lymphedema therapy to those who have tissue swelling from removal of tumor, lymph nodes or injury. This training is very specialized and helps to restore normal function for those patients. Physical therapists make recommendations for counteracting fatigue through the use of exercise and strength training. North Star Lodge is pleased to offer one of the most comprehensive physical therapy sites in Central Washington, ensuring that our patients have a supportive and relaxing experience.

Nutrition

For many patients, the side effects of cancer and cancer treatments make it difficult to eat well. Appetite, taste, smell, and the ability to eat enough food or absorb the nutrients from food may be affected. At North Star Lodge, we have three of only 13 specialists in the state of Washington board certified in oncology nutrition.

Dietitians specializing in oncology nutrition can develop nutrition therapies to help cancer patients get the nutrients needed to maintain body weight and strength, prevent body tissue from breaking down, rebuild tissue, and help fight infection. Your physician may refer you to a dietitian during your therapy to focus specifically on your individual needs. Call 509.574.3408 to schedule an appointment to talk to our oncology nutrition specialists.

Social workers

A social worker is specially trained to help you find the resources you need in the local community to continue your normal life and routine as much as possible. They can assist our patients in finding resources in many areas:

  • Supportive counseling: assistance with personal and family issues.
  • Crisis intervention: grief counseling and adjustment to illness.
  • Community referrals: assistance in locating cancer support groups, patient financial assistance, transportation, housing, hospice and other supportive agencies.
  • Healthcare worker consultation: psychosocial issues.
  • Staff consultation: community resources.
  • Elder abuse and domestic violence screening: all healthcare staff are mandated reporters. Contact us for assistance, or directly report incidents of this nature to your social worker.

For support from our social services team, call 509.574.3497. You can also call 509.574.3568 for assistance with resource coordination, insurance, social security, disability, financial issues, coping, support and support services.

Complementary therapies

At North Star Lodge, complementary therapies are used to enhance traditional treatment, giving the body additional ways to promote the healing process.

It's important for our patients to have a sense of well-being and empowerment. To take care of all sides of healing, emotional, psychological and spiritual, The North Star Lodge cancer team incorporates complementary medicine into conventional treatment plans in order to serve our patients more completely.

Transportation

North Star Lodge has a number of resources for people in our community who qualify to receive help with transportation. Please contact our social worker at 509.574.3497 to learn about transportation available.

Guided imagery

Guided imagery is the conscious use of the imagination to create positive images ("healing visualizations") in order to bring about healthful changes in both the body and the mind.

The following titles are available to listen to while you are receiving treatment:

  • A meditation to help ease pain: imagery and affirmations designed to reduce pain by elevating serotonin levels; teaching relaxation skills; refocusing the mind; encouraging feelings of love, gratitude, safety and peace; and marshaling courage and patience.
  • A meditation to help with bone marrow and stem cell transplantation: designed to promote feelings of safety and support, help with physical discomfort and fatigue, tolerate the temporary loss of identity, encourage patience with the healing process, and envision a successful procedure and the body's acceptance of healthy new cells.
  • A meditation to help you with radiation therapy: designed to help listeners see radiation treatment in a positive light; reduce adverse side effects, such as fatigue and nausea; help immune cells combat trouble spots; and reduce anxiety.
  • A meditation to help you with chemotherapy: designed to show chemotherapy in a positive light; reduce adverse side effects, such as fatigue and nausea; help the body's immune cells fight cancer; and encourage hope, safety and calm.
  • A meditation to help you with fatigue: guided imagery to help relieve tiredness from chemotherapy and radiation therapy and combat side effects from major cancer-fighting treatments.

To view our complete listing of classes and events, please visit our calendar.