Heart and Vascular Rehabilitation
Multidisciplinary cardiac rehabilitation
An important part of Lancaster Regional Medical Center’s comprehensive heart care is helping patients return to the activities they enjoy. Our multidisciplinary team of physical therapists and nutrition and exercise specialists work together to provide a customized approach that meets each patient's needs.
Comprehensive heart and vascular rehabilitation program
Cardiac rehabilitation at Lancaster Regional has been helping people achieve a better quality and longer life for over 20 years. Cardiac rehab is a comprehensive, medically supervised program combining exercise and education to help you recover from a heart attack, other forms of heart disease, as well as heart surgery. Our goal is to help you return to a full and productive life and reduce the chance of additional heart problems.
Lancaster Regional is the only hospital in Lancaster City to offer a complete cardiac rehab program, phases one through three. This means that heart attack and heart surgery patients at Lancaster Regional receive rehabilitation immediately following treatment and well into a vital maintenance level (phase three) as they continue to progress. The medically monitored exercise and wellness education components of phase three at Lancaster Regional are especially important because they help to prevent future heart problems.
You may benefit from cardiac rehab if you have experienced or been evaluated for:
- Heart Attack
- Coronary Heart Disease
- Chest Pain (Angina)
- Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery
- Angioplasty and/or Stent Placement
- Heart Valve Replacement/Repair
- Heart Transplant
- Certain Congenital Heart Disorders
What does it involve?
Cardiac rehab is a safe program tailored to your individual needs and health condition. We offer a team approach, involving you, your physician and the cardiac rehab nurse. It consists of:
Exercise - Under the supervision and guidance of the Cardiac rehab nurse, a monitored exercise program will be established to strengthen your heart muscle and other muscles. We will help you exercise safely and get your energy back. Our program allows you to start exercising slowly a few times a week. Our nurses are specially trained to monitor your body and heart’s response to exercise. Our team will advance you at a comfortable pace and progress you to a higher level of exercise three times per week. Each session usually lasts for one hour and the program is 6-12 weeks long.
Education - Our Cardiac rehab specialists will provide you with individualized cardiac education to help you understand your heart condition. You will learn about your medicines. You will receive support and education on identifying your risk factors and making healthy lifestyle changes. You will receive guidance about diet and nutrition. You will learn to make healthier food choices to decrease fat, cholesterol and sodium intake. We will help you learn the importance of healthy eating habits and weight control. We will help you to read and understand food labels. You will understand the importance of daily exercise and how to exercise safely. Learning and adopting new habits can be overwhelming. We are here to make it easier for you.
Emotional support - Recovering from a heart event can be very overwhelming for you and your family. We are here for you every step of the way. We offer emotional support and encouragement to you and your family. We help you build confidence in your abilities and speed your recovery. We help you learn healthy ways to cope with your feelings and adjust to your new lifestyle. We can also put you in touch with support groups in the area.
Maintenance - Your exercise doesn’t stop once you have completed the 6-12 week monitored program. One of our goals is to bring you to a point where effective safe exercise can be carried out at home or in the community. We can help you develop an exercise program at home. We also offer a cardiac rehab maintenance program to help you maintain your progress. It is a supervised program in our department, but you do not need to wear a monitor. You can set your own exercise schedule. There is a fee involved. Our goal is to assist you while you transition into independent daily exercise.
Cardiac rehab helps you rebuild your life
Our approach encompasses not just the heart. We focus on your overall well-being, physically and emotionally. We will help you regain your strength, alleviate symptoms and reduce your risk of future heart problems. In addition you can expect to:
- Strengthen your heart, lungs and cardiovascular system
- Decrease cholesterol and triglycerides
- Control high blood pressure
- Improve endurance
- Increase your energy level
- Reduce stress, anxiety and depression
- Maintain normal blood sugar levels
- Decrease or maintain weight
- Improve self confidence, motivation and overall well-being
- Improve your quantity and quality of life
How do I get started?
Cardiac rehab is conducted in an outpatient setting following discharge from the hospital. Discuss your interest with your doctor. He/she will contact our cardiac rehab department and we will contact you to discuss our program. Most insurances will pay for some or all of the cost of your cardiac rehab.