What is cardiac rehabilitation?
Life doesn’t stop once you’ve been diagnosed with a major heart problem. Cardiac rehabilitation is a structured way to help patients recover from heart conditions and help prevent future ones — including heart attacks. Cardiac rehab helps people exercise the right way for their heart and educate themselves on the short- and long-term effects heart attacks, heart surgeries, or procedures such as stenting and angioplasty may have.
Cardiac rehab at Carlinville Area Hospital & Clinics offers both Phase II and Phase III.
Phase II is a 12- to 18-week program that meets three times a week (Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays) for one-hour sessions. It does require a physician’s order to enroll. Phase II has two major components:
- Exercise training to help patients learn how to exercise safely, strengthen muscles, and improve stamina after a heart event. These patients wear a heart monitor during their exercises so staff can evaluate their hearts’ tolerance to increased activity.
- Education, counseling, and support to help patients and their families understand their heart condition and find ways to reduce the risks of future heart problems. This component also helps patients learn how to cope with the stress of adjusting to a new lifestyle and deal with fears about the future.
Phase III is a maintenance exercise program that continues to support what is taught in Phase II. Patients do not wear heart monitors during exercise, but they will have periodic assessments of their blood pressure and heart rate as needed.
Why cardiac rehab?
Cardiac rehab can be a lifesaving and changing experience. Planned physical activity makes patients’ hearts stronger, improves energy levels, and lifts spirits. Counseling can help patients eat healthier, lose weight, quit smoking, and lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Cardiac rehab professionals can also communicate with patients’ primary care providers or cardiologist.
Who needs cardiac rehab?
Patients may benefit from cardiac rehab if they have or have had a:
- Heart attack
- Heart condition such as coronary artery disease (CAD), angina, or heart failure
- Heart procedure or surgery, including coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), including coronary angioplasty (balloon angioplasty) and stenting, valve replacement, or a pacemaker or implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)
Typically, our patients are referred by cardiologists or primary care physicians based on a mutual understanding of personal motivation and medical necessity. If you’re interested, ask your physician for a referral.
Benefits of cardiac rehab at Carlinville Area Hospital & Clinics
In addition, to the positive attributes mentioned above, the cardiac rehab program at Carlinville Area Hospital & Clinics features numerous patient benefits, including:
- Dedicated staff with more than 15 years’ experience
- State-of-the-art equipment
- Educational materials
- One-on-one consultations
- Individualized programs to meet each patients’ own needs
- Close to home
Most insurance companies and Medicare provide coverage for the Phase II program. Billing and payment arrangements can be coordinated for individuals with no insurance coverage. The Phase III program is usually not covered by insurance and a small fee is required with each session.