What is cardiac rehabilitation?
Cardiac Rehabilitation at the St. Mary's Heart Center is an exercise
and education program, specially designed to help heart patients reduce
or control cardiac risk factors, improve cardiovascular fitness and learn
to thrive with heart disease.
We work with patients who have experienced heart attacks, undergone cardiac
surgery or coronary angioplasty, (PTCA) or stent placement.
What is the program like?
In the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program we focus on:
- nutrition and weight control
- stress management
We tailor individual programs to fit your needs. Staff members keep thorough
records during your rehabilitation, sharing all information with you and
Whenever you exercise, you will be hooked up to an EKG monitor with staff
supervising and assessing your exercise session.
How does the program work?
There are three phases in St. Mary's Heart Center Cardiac Rehabilitation Program.
Phase I: For patients hospitalized for heart disease. This phase focuses on education
and safe progression of activity.
Phase II: Consists of EKG-monitored exercise sessions, educational classes and individual
teaching. EKG monitoring provides safety during exercise sessions and
serves as one way to evaluate progress. The monitoring also provides your
physician with information to make adjustments in your medical treatment.
Before you begin the Phase II program, you will go through a one-on-one
orientation with the staff. You will have an opportunity to become familiar
with the facility and the staff, which includes cardiac nurses, a registered
dietitian and an administrative technician.
Then you will begin a progressive, supervised and monitored exercise program
three times a week. All equipment is state-of-the-art and designed for
In addition, you'll participate in education classes on heart disease,
nutrition, stress management and lifestyle changes. As you learn how to
reduce your cardiac risk factors, you'll learn to enhance the quality
of your life.
Phase III: Maintenance program that provides a safe and enjoyable atmosphere for individuals
who have completed phase II and wish to continue on with their lifestyle
choices and changes adopted during their phase II program.
Is my spouse part of the program?
We encourage spouses or loved ones to come to the sessions and to be actively
involved in the educational component of the program. We know that if
this happens, you'll have the best possible chance for long-term success.
Learning to adjust to lifestyle changes can be a difficult experience for
heart patients. Along with other patients and the staff, spouses and loved
ones become part of a support group that listens to your concerns and
offer you ongoing encouragement during your recovery.
When do I begin the program?
You and your physician decide a starting point. Some patients begin cardiac
rehabilitation while they're still in the hospital. Others wait a
few weeks after they've had cardiac problems.
How long does the program last?
The formal Phase II program lasts 12 weeks with sessions coordinated three
times a week. Many patients enroll in the maintenance program after they
finish Phase II. They find their motivation remains high when they continue
to work closely with professionals who are aware of their health risks
and who are close at hand while they exercise.
If you would like to know more about Cardiac Rehabilitation, arrange a
visit or find out how to enroll, call us at