Improving the Quality of Life for People with Heart Conditions
Cardiovascular diseases are America's No. 1 killer, with someone dying almost every minute. Every year, cardiac rehabilitation programs are helping approximately 200,000 Americans who have had a cardiac event or diagnosis of a cardiac problem.
Goals of Cardiac Rehabilitation
Cardiac rehab is an individualized plan of monitored exercise and education for patients who have been referred by their doctor. The goals are to help patients gain knowledge, strength and endurance in a medically supervised environment.
The main components of Methodist Medical Center's Cardiac Rehab Program are a medical evaluation, physical activity, education on the effects of lifestyle choices, and psychosocial support.
Patients undergo a thorough medical assessment to identify their medical limitations, other health problems, and physical capabilities. Assessment also includes an evaluation of a patient's risk factors, which may include high blood pressure, high fat diet, smoking, and other conditions that lead to cardiovascular disease.
Monitored exercise as part of cardiac rehab improves a patient's cardiovascular fitness through such activities as walking, cycling and other aerobic exercise. It also may include exercises to increase muscular strength. Trained medical professionals are present to facilitate the rehab process.
Through education, patients in Methodist's cardiac rehab program learn about the lifestyle changes needed to maintain an optimal state of health and well-being. Patients learn to minimize risk factors through classes, which include stress management, proper use of medications and sensible nutrition. If needed, patients also receive guidance on smoking cessation and other choices that affect their heart health.
Smoking Cessation Program
A smoking cessation program is available for anyone who wants to participate. A physician's order is not required. We use the Freedom from Smoking ® classes developed by the American Lung Association.
Each program series consists of eight classes in which patients work with instructors to identify people, places and things that trigger the urge to smoke. Each patient then works with an instructor to develop an individualized stop smoking plan, and the patient receives group support to help them avoid a relapse. A weekly support group is also available for those needing additional support.
Classes are held four times a year at a cost of $50. The entire fee is refunded to participants who complete all eight classes. For more information about Methodist's smoking cessation classes, please call (865) 835-5235 or 1-800-468-6767.
Patients often experience anxiety and depression after having a heart attack or receiving a diagnosis of heart disease. Methodist Medical Center's Cardiac Rehab Program helps them find ways to cope and rebuild their lives, and gives them opportunities to meet and share their concerns and triumphs with people in similar circumstances.
Participation in Cardiac Rehab
Many people at various stages of life benefit from our cardiac rehab program if they have had:
- Coronary artery bypass surgery
- Heart valve replacement
- Heart attack
- Stent placement
- Stable angina
- Congestive heart failure
- Congenital heart disease
- Coronary artery disease
However, not everyone who has one or more of these conditions will benefit from cardiac rehab. For that reason, a physician referral and medical evaluation is needed before a patient may participate in cardiac rehab.
Phases of Cardiac Rehabilitation
Methodist's Cardiac Rehab Program is tailored to meet the specific needs of each individual patient. In general, patients work with their cardiologist, nurse educators, dietitians, exercise rehab specialists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and mental health professionals, as needed.
The three phases of care are rehab during hospitalization, early recovery, and long-term recovery. Hospitalized patients may begin cardiac rehab with non-strenuous activities such as sitting up in bed, doing range-of-motion exercises, and walking. During early recovery, which may last from two to 12 weeks, patients gradually increase their activity level under the close supervision of cardiac rehab specialists and may do moderate exercises at home. Long-term cardiac rehab may continue for the rest of a patient's life. It may include exercise at home and at Methodist's cardiac rehab center, along with continuing education on diet, weight loss, and lifestyle choices.
Our cardiac rehab center, which is part of Methodist Cardiopulmonary Services, is located in Suite 360, Westmall Medical Park, 200 New York Ave., Oak Ridge. A doctor's referral is required. For more information about the program, call (865) 835-5235.
Information for Heart Failure Patients - Methodist Medical Center has developed a resource booklet for patients who are being treated for heart failure. This booklet includes details about heart failure, how it is diagnosed and treated, and lifestyle information for those seeking to be as healthy and active as possible while dealing with heart failure. The booklet also contains tracking sheets to record information that will be helpful for you and your healthcare provider, as well as a list of resources and services within Covenant Health.
To read the booklet online or download a printable copy, click here.