What is Car­diac Rehab?

February 14, 2024

Cardiac Rehab Week takes place takes place from February 12 to 18 this year. The week aims to draw attention to the role of cardiac rehabilitation in reducing the harmful effects of heart disease. Did you know that cardiac diseases are some leading causes of death around the world? Cardiac rehabilitation helps improve health for those at risk. At Onslow Memorial Hospital, our Cardiac Rehabilitation Program has been around for over 20 years. The program teaches patients how to obtain a healthier lifestyle and better manage heart disease.

What is Cardiac Rehabilitation?

Cardiac Rehabilitation or Cardiac Rehab is a medically supervised program designed to improve your cardiovascular health if you have experienced a heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, or heart surgery. Our Cardiac Rehab Program is a team effort between the patient, their family, the physician, and the cardiac rehab staff. Patients who participate in this program learn how to take control of their lives through lifestyle choices and habits that positively affect heart health.

What are the main components of a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program?

You will find that Cardiac Rehab is not just about exercise, it is about a lifestyle change. We believe that the first step to better heart health after medical issues is learning what happened and why. In our Cardiac Rehab Program, patients will learn about controllable and uncontrollable risk factors and ways to lower their risks. In addition, we provide physician-prescribed exercise, nutrition, and much more.

Is Cardiac Rehabilitation only for those who have had heart surgery?

Cardiac Rehab is a physician-prescribed, medically supervised program designed to help patients improve cardiovascular health. It is a crucial part of recovery after a recent heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, heart surgery, and Peripheral Artery Disease.

How long does a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program last?

Cardiac Rehab typically runs for one hour, three days a week, and lasts 12 weeks, depending on your needs.

What role does exercise play in Cardiac Rehabilitation?

Personalized exercise routines assist in activating your cardiovascular system. Additionally, these programs offer guidance on moving your body in heart-healthy ways, promoting overall cardiovascular well-being.

Can anyone join a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program, or is it by referral only?

Your Primary Care Physician or Cardiologist can refer you to our Cardiac Rehabilitation Program. Your heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, or heart surgery needs to have occurred within a year to receive a referral.

What education is provided during Cardiac Rehabilitation?

The Cardiac Rehabilitation team educates patients in understanding and managing their risk factors. This includes educational classes on lifestyle changes and disease management, nutrition, diabetes education, smoking cessation, and heart-healthy living. It also includes diet instruction from our Registered Dietitian.

Does insurance cover Cardiac Rehabilitation?

In most instances, health insurance covers Cardiac Rehabilitation. However, coverage can differ, so it is essential to consult your insurance provider for specific information. Financial assistance programs are often available for those without insurance coverage.

What can I expect after Cardiac Rehabilitation ends?

After your program ends, you will need to continue the diet, exercise, and other healthy lifestyle habits you have learned for the rest of your life to maintain heart-healthy benefits.

Following the completion of our Cardiac Rehab Program, our goal is for you to experience the following:

  • Increased functional capacity (the ability to carry out daily activities)
  • Reduced risk factors
  • Improved quality of life
  • Improved outlook and emotional stability
  • Increased knowledge about heart disease and increased self-management
  • Increased knowledge of exercise and its’ benefit
  • Confidence to exercise on your own
  • Empowerment to maintain a healthier lifestyle

A referral from your physician is all you need to join us or call the Cardiac Rehab clinic at (910) 577-2943 to learn more.