Support services

Treating cancer is a group effort, which is why Edward-Elmhurst Health offers a variety of support services to help you through your cancer journey. Our support services include:

  • Complementary therapies
  • Financial counseling
  • Nutrition services
  • Palliative care
  • Social workers
Edward Cancer Center:
Linda Conlin – 630-646-6054
Sharon Kelleher – 630-646-6111
Deborah Hartman -  630-646-6147
Aaron Polsky – 815-731-3434

Elmhurst Nancy W. Knowles Cancer Center:  
Lisa Marcus – 331-221-2171

No matter if you’ve been recently diagnosed or if you’re in the middle of treatment, Edward-Elmhurst is here for you every step of the way.

Complementary therapies

Complementary therapies are used with conventional medicine (not in place of it) and are part of our holistic approach to patient wellness.

We offer the most cancer support programs and complementary therapies than any cancer center in the region. We even offer programs for caregivers and children of cancer patients. We also offer two American Cancer Society wig boutiques designed to help restore dignity and help you look good...and feel better.

Support groups

Breast and Gynecological Cancer Networking and Support Group - Naperville

This support group meets on the second Wednesday of each month from 6 - 7:00 p.m. in the first floor lobby of Edward Cancer Center.

Cancer and Post-Surgery Support Group - Naperville

A general support group is offered the third Wednesday of every month from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. at the Edward Cancer Center in the first floor lobby. This group meets at the same time as the Caregiver Support Group.

Caregiver Support Group - Naperville

For caregivers, family members, spouses and others who support cancer survivors and surgical patients. This separate group meets the third Wednesday of every month from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. at Edward Cancer Center in the first floor lobby. This group is offered at the same time as the Cancer and Post-Surgical Support Group.

Look Good...Feel Better - Naperville and Plainfield

Look Good...Feel Better is designed for women who are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer. American Cancer Society-trained cosmetologists present makeup techniques, skin and nail care, and options related to hair loss, such as wigs, hats, scarves, and other accessories.

  • Naperville – classes held on the second Tuesday of each month, February through December, from 6 - 8 p.m. at 120 Spalding Drive, Suite 111, Conference Room 2. To register, please call Sharon Kelleher at 630-646-6111.
  • Plainfield – classes held on the second Monday of each month, February through December, from 3 - 5 p.m. at 24600 West 127th Street, Conference Room A. To register, please call Deborah Hartman at 630-646-6147.

EDWARD CANCER CENTER 2016 support groups & services

Wellness classes and seminars

MammaCare - Elmhurst

Learn a new way to perform breast self-exam, taught by a certified instructor who will help you detect a lump or potential abnormality earlier than you thought possible. Register online.

Wednesday Wishes - Advance Directives - Naperville

Advance directives are legal documents that speak for you when you cannot speak for yourself. These decisions are best made before being faced with a life-threatening illness or injury. Meet one-on-one with a member of the palliative care team who will be able to answer your questions about advance directives and assist you in completing one.

Registration is required for these one-hour sessions. To register, please call the registration line at 630-527-6363.

Wellness House

Located in Hinsdale, Wellness House offers ongoing programs that help you cope with a cancer diagnosis and live life to its fullest. Whether you want to connect socially with others or gain knowledge about living with cancer, Wellness House offers several programs for you and your family members.

Breast Cancer Wellness Rehabilitation Class - Naperville

An occupational therapist will discuss post-surgery concerns, exercises to improve range-of-motion, and lymphedema signs, symptoms and treatment. 

This class is held on the second Monday of each month (except holidays), from 4:30 - 5:30 p.m., in the first floor Conference Room at the Edward Cancer Center 
in Naperville.

Registration is required. Please call Edward Class Registration at 630-527-6363.

Breast Cancer Survivorship Seminar: Transitioning from cancer patient to survivor - Naperville

This program, held on Tuesday, April 19 and Tuesday, October 4, from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. at the Edward Cancer Center, will address recurrence risk and reporting symptoms, nutrition and exercise, depression, anxiety and much more. 

Please call the class registration line at 630-527-6363 to register.

Why Weight? Weight Loss/Healthy Nutrition Class for Breast Cancer Survivors - Naperville

This is a 12-week weight loss/healthy nutrition class for breast cancer survivors, led by a dietitian. Guest speakers will address exercise, mindful eating, meditation, sleep and behavior. 

The class  will be held on Wednesday evenings from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m., with a private weigh-in from 5:30 - 5:45 p.m., at Edward Cancer Center, 2nd floor conference room, Suite 206 in Naperville, on the following dates:

March 2, 2016 - May 25, 2016 (no class on March 30)
Sept. 7, 2016 - Nov. 30, 2016 (no class on Nov. 23)

All participants must have completed their active chemotherapy treatment and must provide a written referral from their oncologist.

Please call Doreen Berard, RD, LDN at 630-527-5452 (by Feb. 29, 2016) to register or for questions.

Healing Touch – Naperville - appointment required

Healing Touch is a compassionate energy therapy that works to support and facilitate physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health using light touch.   Healing Touch is offered in Naperville on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, February through December, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM.  

To schedule your 1-hour personal appointment, please call Kathy, Certified Healing Touch Practitioner, at 630-292-9116.

Take Control of Your Healing Journey with the Power of your Mind – Naperville – Tuesday, January 26

This two-hour program will explain how you can use mental tools and self-hypnotism to achieve a high state of emotional self-regulation.  As your emotions affect how your body works, the ability to regulate your feelings can give you an important tool in building your physical resilience.  This program will be led by the Rev. Dr. C. Scot Giles, a Board Certified Diplomate with the National Guild of Hypnotists who specializes in Oncology.  This will be your chance to learn some basic techniques to mobilize your own healing power.  

This program will meet in Naperville, in the First Floor lobby, from 6:30 – 8:30 PM.  Registration required: please call Social Workers with questions and to register. 
Caregivers Who Care Too Much – Naperville – Tuesday, March 1

There are dangers in being a caregiving partner to a person living with cancer.  It is possible to care too much and accidentally create an unhealthy dependence.  It is possible to over-care, and so drain your own emotional battery that you become depressed and unproductive.  

This two-hour program will show you how to use mental tools and self-hypnotism to set healthy boundaries to provide the care you want without depleting your emotional and physical energy. This program will be led by the Rev. Dr. C. Scot Giles, a Board Certified Diplomate with the National Guild of Hypnotists who specializes in Oncology.  You will learn some basic techniques that will help you to care for yourself while caring for your loved one.  

This program will meet in Naperville, in the First Floor lobby, from 6:30 – 8:30 PM. Registration required: please call Social Workers with questions and to register.  

Deep Hypnosis Groups – Naperville – 4th Saturday of each month, April through November

Presented by Dr. C. Scot Giles, a Board Certified Diplomate with the National Guild of Hypnotists, this program is built on the findings of Dr. Bernie Siegel, M.D., the author of best-selling books on Mind/Body Medicine. The topics and hypnotism will be different each month.  

This monthly group meets on the 4th Saturday of each month, April through November, from 10 AM–12:00 Noon, in Naperville, in Conference Room 2.  Registration required: please call Social Workers with questions and to register.  

Drum Circle – Naperville – Tuesday, March 29

Experience the healing sound of the drum, which offers the opportunity for deep healing, relief from anxiety and stress, and fun!  No experience is needed and drums will be provided.  

Meets in Naperville in the First Floor lobby, from 7:00 – 8:00 PM.  Facilitated by Karen Tlusty-Rissman and Pamela Myers.    
Registration required: please call Social Workers with questions and to register.

Beginners Kayak ReTreat - Red Kayak Institute – Saturday, June 4

This meditative experience on Saganashkee Slough in Lemont will be held on Saturday morning, June 4.  Time on the water will be spent mostly in silence, in journaling and reflection.  Kayaks and all equipment will be provided. No kayaking experience is needed.  

Registration is required, beginning in May, and space is limited: please call Social Workers with questions and to register.

Gong Bath – Naperville – date to be determined  

The vibrations of the Earth Gong and Tibetan singing bowls have the capacity to calm the mind, relax the body, and relieve stress by bathing you in sound. Facilitated by Danielle Dvorak, Certified Vibrational Healing Sound Practitioner.  

Registration is required: please call Social Workers with questions and to register.

American Cancer Society wig boutique

Losing your hair is difficult; finding a free wig isn't. Brand new wigs are offered at no charge to patients whose insurance does not cover a cranial prosthesis. An American Cancer Society-trained volunteer will help you choose the right look from multiple styles and colors available.

To schedule your personal appointment, call 1-800-227-2345 and specify if you would prefer to visit the boutique in Elmhurst or Plainfield.

Individual nutrition consultations

Are you doing all you can nutrition-wise to maintain strength during cancer treatments to allow for optimal healing? Are you having difficulty with the side effects of treatment?

Schedule a one-on-one appointment with our wellness/oncology dietitian Doreen Berard, RD, LDN, by calling 630-646-6840. Doreen is available at the Edward Cancer Center in Naperville.

Fitness and yoga

Back on Track- Edward-Elmhurst Health & Fitness Center - Naperville

This eight-week exercise class is designed to complement your cancer treatments by enhancing aerobic capacity, muscular strength and flexibility. Individuals progress at their own pace. Offered at Edward-Elmhurst Health & Fitness Center in Naperville. A physician's recommendation is required. To register, or for more information, call 630-646-5917.

The medically-based Edward-Elmhurst Health & Fitness Centers offer a variety of classes, personal training and spa services to help you get back on the Healthy Driven track.

Healing Sound Meditation - Naperville

In this class, a Vibrational Energy practitioner uses "singing bowls" to promote deep relaxation. Meditation helps to focus attention, relax the body, and calm the mind. This group meets the first and fourth Wednesday of each month from 5:45 - 6:45 p.m. in the first floor lobby.

Mindful Yoga - Naperville

Mindful Yoga promotes relaxation through breath work and increases flexibility. Poses are modified to adapt to all levels of experience and limitations. Mats, blocks, straps and blankets are provided. This group meets every Thursday (except holidays) from 6 - 7 p.m. in the first floor lobby.

Gentle Exercise Class - Naperville

This class is designed to work with individuals who are receiving treatment or have had surgery and are not yet able to do cardio exercises. The program is led by Kay Howard, a certified cancer exercise specialist and certified yoga teacher. All movements can be modified to suit individual needs and limitations.

Join us in Naperville on Thursdays in June and September from 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. in the first floor conference room at the Edward Cancer Center. Registration is required. Please call Deborah Hartman at 630-646-6147 to register.

Animal-assisted therapy

Dog/handler teams at Edward and Elmhurst hospitals visit patients, at their request, in just about every part of the hospital every day of the week. The visits usually last about five or 10 minutes and can help reduce stress and pain. Learn more about our animal assisted therapy program.

Reiki therapy at Elmhurst

Reiki is a complementary, holistic healing practice intended to promote the balance of energy in the body. It has been found to help patients relax, reduce stress levels, relieve pain and improve mental clarity and sleep habits. The session is safe, gentle and non-invasive, and is used to enhance the effectiveness of conventional medical treatment.

If you’re a cancer patient or a caregiver, you can take advantage of the free Reiki sessions we offer. Visit the Nancy W. Knowles Cancer Center at Elmhurst Hospital at 177 E. Brush Hill Road in Elmhurst, on the first, third or fourth Wednesday of each month from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. No appointment is necessary.

Imerman Angels

Edward and Elmhurst Cancer Centers have partnered with Imerman Angels, a not-for-profit organization that connects a person fighting cancer today with a survivor of the same type of cancer. This one-on-one relationship gives the cancer fighter the opportunity to ask personal questions and receive encouragement from someone who is uniquely familiar with his/her situation.

Imerman Angels also connects caregivers to other caregivers who can relate to and understand their situation. To get connected, visit or call 877-274-5529. Their goal is to complete your match within one business day. All of the services that Imerman Angels provides are free.

Camp Hope for children

Camp Hope at Naper Settlement - Naperville

The Edward Cancer Center is proud to offer Camp Hope, a week-long summer day camp held the weeks of June 20 and July 11 for children, ages 6 - 12, whose parent or loved one is living with cancer. Camp Hope campers will participate in Naper Settlement's TREASURE HUNTERS program, and will attend special breakout sessions each day. Registration for 2016 begins in April. Call the class registration line at 630-527-6363.

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