Strengthening the heart and increasing cardiovascular efficiency after a heart attack, heart surgery, or heart failure, is essential to a successful recovery. Cardiac rehabilitation helps patients improve endurance through a comprehensive program of education and exercise.
The Cardiac Rehabilitation team at St. Mary's Life Center includes registered nurses and physical therapists. Rehab begins in the hospital and continues on an outpatient basis. It includes exercise classes and medically supervised education on diet, nutrition, oxygen use, anxiety management, and breathing techniques. A regular progress report is submitted to the patient's physician. Recommendations for long-term lifestyle changes and lifelong maintenance are also is part of the rehab plan.
St. Mary's Cardiac Rehabilitation program follows guidelines provided by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation and the American College of Sports Medicine. The department operates under the medical direction of a board-certified cardiologist. All nurses in Cardiac Rehabilitation are certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support.