Right after a Cardiac procedure, patients are always advised to take every step carefully. If you’ve always been an active person, thinking of getting right back to the normal stride soon after a cardiac procedure, it won’t be easy. The reason is the sheer physical pressure the person would face if engaged in activities similar to those from before-procedure time. Sometimes exertion can prove to be fatal too! In order to make things easier for those who have undergone a cardiac procedure, here is a quick post-procedure guide:
Medical Rehabilitation is important:
Medical Rehabilitation is a medically supervised program for patients who have had a heart attack, heart failure and Heart Valve surgery, Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting or Percutaneous Coronary Intervention. Cardiac Rehab involves adopting heart-healthy lifestyle, exercises, education on heart-healthy living and counseling to reduce stress, that help one return to an active life. Cardiac Rehab can significantly improve health and quality of life, reduce the need for medicines to treat heart or chest pain, it decreases the chance of going back to the hospital for further intervention.
Cardiac rehab is provided in an Outpatient Clinic or in the hospitals Rehab Center. Cardiac Rehab team includes Doctors, Nurses, Exercise Specialists, Physical & Occupational Therapists, Dietitians or Nutritionists and Mental Health Specialists. The Cardiac Rehab Team will design a program to meet your post-procedure needs. Before starting your program, the rehab team will take your medical history, conduct physical examination and perform battery of tests, to help chalk out the patients rehab chart. Possible tests include an Electrocardiogram (ECG), cardiac imaging tests and a treadmill or stationary bike exercise test. Tests to measure Cholesterol and Blood Sugar levels are also conducted. During cardiac rehab, the patient is taught to exercise safely and gradually increase physical activity. The length of time spent at the cardiac rehab depends on the patient’s condition. Most insurance plans cover a standard cardiac rehab program that includes 36 supervised sessions over 12 weeks.
The heart-healthy lifestyle changes in cardiac rehab have few risks though. Very rarely, physical activity during rehab can cause serious problems such as injuries to your muscles and bones, or possibly life-threatening heart rhythm problems too.
1. Following appropriate post-procedure treatment:
Besides cardiac rehabilitation, it is very necessary for the patient to follow their treatment plan, as instructed by the Physician. Medical treatment as per the doctor’s prescription has to be followed without fail.
2. Change your lifestyle!
Smoking will only make your condition worse. Stop smoking immediately if you are expecting a better result. Take up a moderate physical activity (equal to 30 minutes of walking per day). Do not hesitate to ask your doctor for advice on the most suitable activity. Avoid alcohol and focus on healthy food habits.
3. Regular follow-up with the Cardiologist:
Make sure you are regularly consulting the treating Cardiologist. This supervision ensures adherence to treatment, its efficacy and addressed side-effects, if any. Conducting a blood test at regular intervals may be necessary. Doctor will also check that there is no progression of your disease.
~ By Dr Brajesh Kumar Kunwar (MD DM Cardiology)