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Cardiac Rehab

Life after cardiac-related illness can be dynamic and fulfilling when you invest in a comprehensive, medically supervised program of cardiac rehabilitation and wellness.

Memorial Hermann Cardiac Wellness Centers are designed to help people with heart disease participate actively and confidently in their own recovery as they return, as much as possible, to the activities they’ve enjoyed for years.

The Wellness Centers offer cardiac rehab to patients with health histories that include but are not limited to:

All Memorial Hermann Cardiac Wellness Centers are accredited by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR).

What is Cardiac Rehab?

Cardiac rehab is a multidimensional, medically supervised program designed to help patients recover as quickly as possible from heart disease. With a comprehensive focus on exercise, education and lifestyle change, the program is specially designed to improve your overall physical and mental functioning.

The goals of our program are to:

  • Teach how to reduce your risk factors to prevent the progression of heart disease
  • Help you develop strength, flexibility and cardiovascular endurance through an individualized exercise program
  • Help you gain the confidence you need to resume the activities of daily living
  • Improve your overall quality of life

Benefits of Cardiac Rehab

People who participate in a cardiac rehabilitation program following heart surgery or a diagnosis of heart disease tend to have better outcomes in managing their condition.

Other benefits may include:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Less need for medications
  • Quicker return to work or normal daily living
  • More physical strength and improved condition
  • Slowed development or reversal of hardening of the arteries
  • Decreased risk of heart attack
  • Relief from fear and anxiety
  • Weight loss over time

A Flexible, Individualized Cardiac Rehab Program

A specialized team of physicians, nurses, exercise physiologists, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals will oversee your progress in our cardiac rehabilitation program.

Your individualized program will include:

  • Telemetry-monitored exercise sessions
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Stress-management consultations
  • Smoking-awareness classes
  • Cardiac education
  • CPR training

We'll customize an exercise program to match your particular needs and improvement goals, with gradually increasing fitness targets.

Our staff is on hand at all times to monitor your EKG, blood pressure and heart rate during exercise. We will also teach you relaxation techniques that will help increase your sense of well-being.

Appointments and referrals

You'll need a referral from your doctor to participate in our cardiac rehabilitation program. If you're not currently seeing a doctor use our physician search to find a primary care physician or cardiologist.

Insurance

A prescription is needed to begin the cardiac rehabilitation program. Most insurance companies cover phases I and II of cardiac rehab, depending upon the policy, and Medicare covers both phases as well as entrance and exit stress tests. Phase III cardiac rehab and wellness-related services are charged at the end of the month and are not usually covered.

What to Expect in Cardiac Rehab

During cardiac rehabilitation, you will undergo a health assessment, monitored physical activity, risk factor education and counseling and support, among other activities.

Health assessment

At the start of your program, our staff will thoroughly evaluate your medical history, assess your physical abilities and limitations and perform a physical examination. This initial evaluation is used to customize a safe and effective program tailored to meet your individual needs and goals.

Monitored physical activity

Throughout every exercise session, our staff will monitor your heart rhythm and heart rate by EKG and will also monitor your blood pressure.  Your cardiovascular fitness session may include walking, cycling, jogging and other endurance activities. Resistance training is also included to improve muscle strength. Your exercise progression is increased at a pace comfortable for you.  Your doctor will receive updates on your progress throughout the course of your program.

Risk factor education

Managing your risk factors is vitally important in cardiac rehab. You will receive ongoing education about risk factors including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes,smoking, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, and poor nutrition. Our staff strongly emphasizes adopting therapeutic lifestyle changes that involve developing heart-healthy eating habits and engaging in regular cardiovascular exercise to reduce your risk factors of heart disease.

Counseling and support

The cardiac rehab team provides guidance to help you maintain the healthy lifestyle changes you have made. You may receive counseling on nutrition, medications, smoking cessation, stress management, and other topics. The team also serves as a social and emotional support system to encourage you throughout your program.

Phases of Cardiac Rehab

The cardiac rehab process generally follows these three phases:

Phase I

This process begins when the patient enters the hospital, and a cardiovascular condition has been identified.

Patients and their families are taught about cardiac disease, how to modify risk factors and how to return to a maximum level of functioning upon leaving the hospital. Phase I rehabilitation also includes telemetry-monitored exercise, nutrition counseling, stress management consultations and smoking awareness as needed. 

Phase II

Phase II rehab helps patients and their families adjust to heart disease and modify their lifestyle. The 12-week, 36-session program starts immediately after discharge from the hospital. It includes telemetry-monitored exercise, nutrition and stress management consultations, smoking awareness classes and CPR training.

Phase III

This is a maintenance program that lets patients continue lifestyle modification through non-telemetry-monitored exercise and shorter versions of nutritional, stress management and smoking awareness counseling. It may also be used by individuals with a high risk of cardiovascular disease to prevent future problems.

Contact Us

Have questions about cardiac rehab? Use the form at the top of this page or you can complete our contact us form here »