About the Functional Wellness Initiative
The Funtional Wellness Initiative is a collaborative early intervention program combining language, motor and neurocognitive rehabilitation to improve the survival and quality of life of brain tumor patients.
It is estimated that 90 percent of brain tumor patients are coping with significant impairment as a result of their tumor, impacting their ability to maximize their quality of life. Rarely are brain tumors situated in "silent" areas of the brain, and areas often considered “silent” nevertheless can affect complex human functions, such as relationships, employment and decision-making.
The Functional Wellness Initiative of the University of Michigan Brain Tumor Program works to identify and treat adult and pediatric patients with both malignant and benign brain tumors affecting language, motor, psychological and neurocognitive outcomes.
Collaborative Team Approach
The Functional Wellness Initiative at the University of Michigan takes a collaborative team approach, in which patients receive a comprehensive care plan integrating the latest in surgical and non-surgical brain tumor treatments and rehabilitative therapies—from day one.
A visit to our clinic will include brain tumor experts from neuro-oncology, physical medicine, clinical neuropsychology, speech pathology, and neurosurgery and provide one-on-one counseling to screen and determine which services will help you achieve the best possible outcomes. An individualized, comprehensive care plan is then created based on you and your family's unique needs, values and preferences.
Having a diverse team of care providers present on your initial visit allows you to share your unique concerns and needs with all care providers at one time. This helps us understand you and how your life story gives importance to various treatment and therapy options. This process allows you to accomplish more at each visit, reducing the number of visits needed—saving you and your family important time and travel—all while enhancing your care experience.
Upon referral, our multidisciplinary team of experts will meet with you one–on–one and assess your unique needs in order to develop a personalized comprehensive care plan addressing both your tumor and rehabilitation. This will include a baseline assessment of your neurocognitive and motor functions, social structure, and language capabilities, as well as a review of your imaging and prior cancer history.
At the end of these assessments, our team will provide a full summary of findings focusing on your short and long-term needs. If needed, you will meet with a neurosurgeon to discuss surgical options to maximize tumor removal and a neurologic oncologist to discuss treatment options. Options may include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, anti-angiogenic options, in addition to clinical trials offered through the University of Michigan Brain Tumor Program.
We will also discuss strategies to maximize and improve any existing motor, language, and cognitive deficits. At the end of your visit, you will receive a personalized comprehensive care plan to take home with you.
Your continued care will include scheduled treatments, rehabilitation and assessments along with sustained communication with your care team. These follow-up appointments allow for continued monitoring and support throughout the care process. As needs change, so will your treatment plan — focusing on both length of survival as well as achieving the best possible quality of life.
Brain Tumor Research and Organ Donation
Our brain tumor research involves laboratory studies of the nature of tumor cells and their response to treatment. Research of this type includes our Brain Metastases Clinic, where a multidisciplinary care team is dedicated to studying tumors that have spread to other areas.
For more information about research into brain and spinal tumors, visit the Brain Tumor Research page on the Rogel Cancer Center website. For information about whole brain donation, fill out the Whole Brain Donation Information form.