What Is Cardiac Rehabilitation?

The goal of cardiac rehabilitation, or rehab, is to help you get heart healthy. If you’ve had a heart event, your doctor may recommend that you participate in a cardiac rehab program.

Rehab sessions usually take place a few times a week for 12 to 18 weeks, although this can vary. There are many locations throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C.

In each session, you will complete exercises, which may include riding a stationary bike or walking on a treadmill. During your exercise, an on-site professional care team will keep track of your heart to make sure you don’t overdo it.

Also included in your rehab are education classes about how to make heart-healthy lifestyle changes. You may also have an opportunity to meet with a dietitian to talk about how to prepare healthy meals.

How soon you start a rehab program will depend on your individual case, but it will most likely be between one and four weeks after leaving the hospital. Your hospital care team will make a suggestion, but make sure to also discuss it with your regular cardiologist.

Changing your habits to adopt a more heart-healthy lifestyle can be tough, but it’s really important if you want to help your heart and improve your overall health.