Cardiovascular Rehabilitation

The goal of the Cardiovascular Rehabilitation program at McLaren is to provide cardiac patients across Michigan with the education, experience and practical knowledge to return to full productive lives. This includes targeted exercise programming designed to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life.  Our program includes monitored, personalized exercise classes, and educational experiences to help the patient control their disease and make the necessary changes to reduce the chances of repeat events.

Cardiovascular Rehabilitation can benefit those individuals with conditions or procedures such as:

  • angina pectoris
  • myocardial infarction (heart attack)
  • coronary artery bypass graft surgery
  • valve repair or replacement
  • interventional procedures such as angioplasty and coronary stenting
  • post heart transplant patients
  • heart failure
  • arrhythmia
  • device implants, such as pacemakers or internal defibrillators
  • multiple cardiac risk factors (hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, and smoking)

Therapy Strategies:

  • Goal setting
  • Counseling
  • EKG-monitored exercise
  • Monitored heart rate and blood pressure
  • Individualized exercise prescription
  • Assessments and screenings

Cardiovascular Rehabilitation is divided into three phases.  Each phase is designed to provide you with the appropriate medical support and exercise training based on your own personal Cardiovascular history.

Phase I:

The first phase of cardiac rehab begins in the hospital after a heart attack, heart surgery or other cardiac treatment.  This initial phase includes education about the event and new medications, and guidelines for home activities.  In some cases, it also includes small amounts of telemetry monitored exercise.

Phase II:

This phase begins two to six weeks after your cardiac event.  It includes continuous telemetry monitoring, 30 minutes of aerobic exercise divided into shorter segments on a variety of exercise equipment including treadmills, stationery bikes, rowers, and stair climbers.  All exercises are conducted at a safe and comfortable, yet effective, level for you.  Phase II also includes education on exercising safely and effectively, risk factor modification, dietary guidelines, and smoking cessation, as needed.

Phase III:

Cardiovascular Rehabilitation continues for as long as you like in Phase III.  This is a supervised aerobic and strength-building exercise class.  It provides medical supervision, including blood pressure and rhythm strip checks to monitor your Cardiovascular health; and small group personal training to help you attain your health and fitness goals.  Risk factor education also continues in Phase III. 

What cardiac rehabilitation offers

  • A clinical evaluation for safe and optimal exercise prescription and goal-setting
  • Individualized exercise and activity program within a group setting
  • Monitoring and better control of:
    • Heart rate
    • Blood pressure
    • Blood oxygen levels
    • Cholesterol
    • Diabetes
  • Support and training to help you return to work or normal activities and manage your heart condition and other medical concerns
  • Opportunity to meet and share stories with other people like you

Benefits of cardiovascular rehabilitation

  • Regular physical exercise helps your heart and body get stronger and work more efficiently. It improves your energy level and lifts your spirits.
  • Regular exercise reduces your chances of future heart problems including heart attack.
  • Improves stamina and strength, which allows you to resume normal activities, including work, hobbies, and regular exercise.
  • Improves communication with your cardiologist, primary, or referring physician about your progress following your cardiac event.
  • Improves confidence and well-being

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