Cardiovascular Rehabilitation & Prevention
Restoring Health and Preventing Future Heart Problems in Brighton, MA
Cardiac conditions such as heart attacks, valve disease, heart failure and arrhythmias can have a debilitating impact on a patient’s life. These diseases can significantly reduce a patient's quality of life, endurance, and ability to return to work. Tasks they could easily do prior to their cardiac event are now more challenging.
Cardiac rehabilitation is a key step for recovery after a cardiac event or heart surgery. These medically supervised programs are tailored to meet each patient’s unique cardiac rehabilitation needs and consist of exercise training, heart-healthy lifestyle education and strategies for stress reduction to help patients effectively manage their new cardiac conditions.
Your cardiac rehabilitation team at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center will work with you to develop a plan to reduce your risk for heart attack, recurrent heart failure, or second cardiac surgery so you can keep living a long, happy, healthy and productive life.
Some of the reasons patients may be prescribed cardiac rehabilitation that is covered by most payers include:
- Recent myocardial infarction
- Angioplasty or stent placement
- Coronary artery disease with angina
- Cardiomyopathy with ejection fraction ≤35%
- Heart transplant or recent LVAD implantation
- Heart valve repair or replacement surgery
- Coronary artery bypass surgery
- Peripheral vascular disease with claudication
The Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center
Dr. Uyen Lam oversees St. Elizabeth’s cardiac rehabilitation program. Dr. Lam and the cardiac rehabilitation team will work with you to develop a plan to reduce your risk for heart attack, recurrent heart failure, or second cardiac surgery so you can keep living a long, happy, healthy and productive life.
- Evaluation – Your cardiologist and cardiac rehabilitation team will work together to determine your current physical abilities, your limitations and identify any other conditions that may contribute to your heart problems. Before you are given any exercise plans to follow, it’s important for your physicians to identify potential exertion-related risk factors – the last thing we want is for your rehabilitation to cause additional problems.
- Exercise – After you have been evaluated, your cardiac rehabilitation team will help you develop and implement a physical activity routine. These activities most often include low to moderate impact, safe exercises such as walking, rowing and cycling. Most cardiac rehabilitation plans will include some type of aerobic exercise at least three times a week. Your team of doctors and physical therapists will also teach you proper warm up and cool down activities as well as the proper techniques to prevent injury.
- Lifestyle Modification – Another key component of cardiac rehabilitation is changing your lifestyle for the better, which can range from managing stress to getting conditions such as diabetes, high cholesterol and blood pressure under control. If you are a smoker or heavy drinker, your cardiac rehabilitation team will provide resources and assistance to help you quit as well as identify any other habits that are having a negative effect on your heart health.
- Ongoing Support – Heart health is not a battle that can be easily won. It’s a never-ending process and you don’t have to do it alone. Making positive progress is possible when you work with the cardiac rehabilitation specialists at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, but it will require time, commitment and sacrifice. With persistence and dedication, patients undergoing cardiac rehabilitation should experience noticeable improvements in how they feel.
Many patients just beginning cardiac rehabilitation feel overwhelmed by the many changes they are being asked to make. It’s not easy, but there will be tangible rewards for sticking with the program. Simply waking up every morning feeling better, having more energy and being a more relaxed, healthier person will prove to be its own reward and make your lifestyle changes and sacrifices worth it.
If you have questions about cardiac rehabilitation or your doctor recommended you or a loved one begin cardiac rehabilitation, call 617-789-2000 to speak with the team at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center.