STAR Program


STAR Program® Helps Cancer Patients

When her shoulder started hurting, Ann Steeves thought it was from her recent ski trip. STAR

After speaking with her physical therapist – Vincent Buscemi, clinical director of rehabilitation services at Orthopedics Plus– the breast cancer survivor was informed that her shoulder pain was most likely the result of her cancer treatment.

“Cancer treatments often cause significant pain, fatigue and impairment for survivors,” Buscemi said.

To help cancer survivors, Winchester Hospital partnered with the Survivorship, Training and Rehabilitation (STAR) Program®.The program focuses on a multidisciplinary approach to develop oncology rehabilitation services for patients. The STAR Program® reduces the debilitating side effects of treatment for patients throughout the course of therapy and recovery by utilizing a variety of services including rehabilitation, social work, exercise, healthy eating, acupuncture, massage, yoga and more.

“We were helping people survive cancer, but not helping them live their life after,” said Arlan Fuller, MD, Winchester Hospital’s clinical vice president for the integration of oncology services and academic affiliations.“Through the STAR Program we can help patients get back to their new life.”

The goal of the STAR Program is to reduce the debilitating side effects of treatment and maximize health and well being throughout the course of therapy and recovery.

“We can now offer patients who receive treatment at Winchester Hospital a number of different options to help improve their quality of life,” said Sue Mizer, director of oncology services at Winchester Hospital’s Center for Cancer Care. “Through the STAR Program, we can care for the wholepatient. They’re treated for cancer and, with this program, we can help alleviate their pain through acupuncture or massage and physical therapy can get them back to their new life.”

As for Steeves, she is back on the slopes and with the help of the STAR Program and physical therapy, she’s able to ski pain-free.

“This program gives me the guidance to help me live my life again,” Steeves said.

About Winchester Hospital

Winchester Hospital is the first hospital in Massachusetts to earn Magnet recognition, the American Nurses Association’s highest honor for nursing excellence, three times. As the northwest suburban Boston area’s leading provider of comprehensive health care services, the 229-bed facility provides care in general, bariatric and vascular surgery, orthopedics, pediatrics, cardiology,pulmonary medicine, oncology, gastroenterology, rehabilitation, radiation oncology, pain management, obstetrics/gynecology and a Level IIB Special CareNursery. Winchester Hospital has clinical affiliations withseveral nationally recognized hospitals in the region, including BostonChildren’s Hospital, Tufts Medical Centerand Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.To learn more, visit