Cardiac rehabilitation is a supervised program that includes: exercise, lifestyle changes, education and emotional support for people who have had a heart attack, bypass surgery or have other heart problems. Programs are medically supervised and individually designed to enhance your quality of life. The goal is to help you return to and maintain your best possible physical and emotional condition.
You may start a cardiac rehab program while you are still in the hospital, soon after leaving the hospital or at any other time to help prevent heart problems. Your doctor will give you an exercise prescription that gives you and your cardiac rehab team guidelines for the frequency, duration and intensity of exercise.
Cardiac rehab has four phases; your doctor will determine which phase is best for you to start your program.
Phase I: Inpatient Program
Phase 1 takes place in the hospital after you have experienced a heart attack or other major heart problem.
- An assessment of how well you can do self-care (such as brushing teeth or hair or bathing).
- A risk assessment, to determine your ability to participate in an exercise program.
- Identifying which daily activities, such as lifting, you can safely do.
- Patient and family education about the lifestyle changes you need to make, such as eating healthy foods and stopping cigarette smoking.
- Performing light exercise, such as walking short distances several times a day and possibly a weight-training program.
Phases II, III and IV: Outpatient Programs
The remaining three phases of your cardiac rehab take place at YMCA Health Living Center - INTEGRIS, located on the campus of INTEGRIS Baptist Medical Center. This state-of-the-art exercise facility, coupled with our team of trained professionals, will help you meet your health goals. The healthier lifestyle you've learned-including eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and not smoking-can then become a way of life for you. Cardiac rehab during phases II, III and IV usually includes:
- Close monitoring and supervision during the early phases of your exercise program.
- Preparing you to return to work and the recreational activities you enjoyed before your heart problems. Your work or leisure activities may need to be modified.