Kathy Ryans

  • Associate Professor, Physical Therapy
Photo of Kathryn Ryans

Dr. Kathryn Ryans is a full-time Associate Professor and Co-Director of Clinical Education in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program in the School of Health and Natural Sciences. She began teaching at Mercy University in 2008.    Dr. Ryans is certified in lymphedema  management, and she is a Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Oncologic Physical Therapy.  She has been practicing physical therapy in an outpatient orthopedic setting since 1995 and remains current in the field of physical therapy through part time clinical practice. Dr. Ryans is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association.  Her research interests are in oncology rehabilitation, lymphedema management, and physical therapy education and her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals. She has been an invited speaker at local and national conferences including the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) Combined Sections Meeting, APTA Education Leadership Meeting, APTA Women's Health Special Interest Group (WHSIG), the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, and other cancer survivorship conferences for patients, physicians, and clinicians.




tDPT Temple University,  Philadelphia, Pa

BS Health Sciences and MS Physical Therapy Mercy University, Dobbs Ferry N.Y.

 ​​​A.A.S. Physical Therapist Assistant Union County College,  Plainfield, N.J.




ABPTS: Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Oncologic Physical Therapy

Survivorship Training and Rehabilitation Certification

Certified Lymphedema Therapist Lymphology Association of North America

Manual Lymph Drainage/Complete Decongestive Therapy Certification.

Dr. Ryans is the primary instructor for the following courses in the DPT program: PHTR500 Introduction to PT Measurement, PHTR616 Adulthood I, PHTR618 Adulthood Problem Solving; PHTR630 Basic Clinical Education and is the Co-Director of Clinical Education.  She teaches in other DPT courses on the topics of peripheral edema, oncology pathology, oncology differential diagnosis, breast cancer rehabilitation, and proprioceptive neuomuscular facilitation. 

Peer Reviewed Publications:

Ryans, K., Perdomo, M., Davies, C.C. et al. Rehabilitation interventions for the management of breast cancer–related lymphedema: developing a patient-centered, evidence-based plan of care throughout survivorship. J Cancer Surviv. 2021: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11764-021-00991-2

Davies, C. C., Levenhagen, K., Ryans, K., Perdomo, M., Gilchrist, L. An Executive Summary of the APTA Academy for Oncologic Physical Therapy Clinical Practice Guideline: Interventions for Breast Cancer-Related Lymphedema. Rehabilitation Oncology. 2020;38(3):103-109.


Davies, C. C.Levenhagen, K., Ryans, K., Perdomo, M., Gilchrist, L. Interventions for Breast Cancer-Related Lymphedema: A Clinical Practice Guideline from the Academy of Oncologic Physical Therapy of the American Physical Therapy Association. Physical Therapy. 2020;100(7): 1163–1179. https://doi.org/10.1093/ptj/pzaa087

Ryans, K., Davies, C.C., Gaw, G. et al. Incidence and predictors of axillary web syndrome and its association with lymphedema in women following breast cancer treatment: a retrospective study. Support Care Cancer 2020: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-020-05424-x

Perdomo M, Ryans K, Levenhagen K, Davies C, Gilchrist, L.    Clinical Implementation of the Clinical Practice Guidelines for Diagnosing Upper-Quadrant Lymphedema Secondary to Cancer.   Rehab Oncol. 2018. 36(3):E11-E18

Gilchrist L, Levenhagen K, Davies C.C, Ryans K, Perdomo M.  Author Response, Phys Ther. 2018 98(4): 281–283,

Levenhagen K, Davies C.C, Perdomo M, Ryans K, Gilchrist, L.   Diagnosis of Upper Quadrant Lymphedema Secondary to Cancer: Clinical Practice Guideline From the Oncology Section of the American Physical Therapy Association.   Phys Ther. 2017;97:729-745.

Davies C.C, Levenhagen K, Ryans K, Perdomo M, Gilchrist, L.   2017    An Executive Summary of the Clinical Practice Guideline: Diagnosis of Upper-Quadrant Lymphedema Secondary to Cancer.   Rehab Oncol. 2017;35:114-118  

Davies C.C, Levenhagen K, Ryans K, Perdomo M, Gilchrist, L.   How Can a Clinical Practice Guideline Enhance My Practice?   Rehab Oncol. 2017;35:111-113 

Pivko SE, Abbruzzese LD, Duttaroy P, Hansen RL, Ryans K. Effect of Physical Therapy Students' Clinical Experiences on Clinician Productivity.  J Allied Health. 2016 Spring;45(1):33-40.

Hile E, Levangie P, Ryans K, Gilchrist L.  Clinical Measures of Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy – A Systematic Review.  Rehabili Oncol. 2015: 33(3)32-41.

Perdomo M, Davies C.C, Levenhagen K, Ryans K. Assessment measures of secondary lymphedema in breast cancer survivors. Rehabili Oncol. 2014: 32(1) 22-35

Davies C.C, Ryans K, Levenhagen K, Perdomo M. Quality of life and functional outcome measures for secondary lymphedema in breast cancer survivors". Rehabili Oncol. 2014: 32(1) 7-12

Ryans K, Ryans K, Lichtman S. abstract Utilization and Barriers to Participation in a Breast Cancer Rehabilitation Program..  Rehabili Oncol 2014: 32(2) 34