FORT WORTH – After her diagnosis, Linda Caldwell knew she would lose a breast to cancer. She never dreamed she would also lose the ability to move an arm.
"From having lymph nodes removed, I had lost all my range of motion in my left arm," Caldwell said, "I couldn't raise my arm up probably any higher than this."
A personal training regimen at a fitness center is helping her regain her strength and range of motion. It's just one of the special services offered at the new $22 million Moncrief Cancer Institute in Fort Worth.
For years, the Moncrief Cancer Center was a premier radiation center. Several years ago, it shifted its emphasis to provide alternative services in leased spaces dotted throughout the city. The new institute will house all these services under one roof.
This new facility, located at 400 W. Magnolia Ave. near the city's south side, isn't like other cancer centers, however. There is no treatment offered here.
"Instead what we do is cancer prevention, cancer survivorship, and cancer research," said Moncrief Medical Director Dr. Keith Argenbright. "Things that most cancer providers don't typically do."
The center offers preventive screenings, like mammograms and colonoscopies, nutrition counseling, healthy cancer cooking classes. Genetic counseling at the facility –– or via-closed circuit TV or Skype –– is also offered.
"It's for people in rural areas who may not have access to services like this and may not be able to travel into Fort Worth and get services like this," said genetic counselor Sara Pirzadeh-Miller.
All of the services are free for those who qualify thanks to state, federal and private grants.
Linda Caldwell says Moncrief paid three months of her insurance premiums to help her through a tough time. The fitness program is getting her moving again.
"These people are wonderful to help you get that get up and go again," she said.