There are three phases to Cardiac Rehabilitation at St.
Mary. Each phase is designed to meet the individual
needs of each patient and includes cardiovascular risk-factor
education and counseling, emotional support and exercise activities.
Patients are referred to all three phases by their family physician or
Phase I begins in
the hospital. Physicians place Phase I orders for patients who have had a
heart attack, cardiac catherization, angioplasty or patients with congestive
heart failure. A member of the Cardiac Rehabilitation team will begin
working with the patient while the patient is still hospitalized. All patients
are educated on the cardiovascular risk factors and the signs/symptoms of a
heart attack. As needed, patients are given home-exercise walking
guidelines. Patients with congestive heart failure are given more detailed
education on daily weight checks, salt/sodium restrictions, and a review of the
signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure.
Phase I OHS (Open Heart Surgery)
Phase I OHS
orders are standard orders on all valve and bypass surgery patients. All
OHS patients are seen daily by the Cardiac Rehabilitation team for physical
activity, education and emotional support. Physical activities include:
range of motion exercises,diaphragmatic breathing, incentive spirometry
exercises, ambulation in the room and hallway, and review of stair climbing
prior to discharge. Education includes the review of home activity guidelines,
walking guidelines and signs and symptoms of cardiac
Phase II is the
initial outpatient phase of the program. Patients exercise in the Cardiac
Rehabilitation department while the staff of nurses and exercise physiologists
monitor the patient's responses to exercise. All patients in Phase II are
monitored on telemetry monitors for the duration of their individual
program. These exercise sessions include group and individual education
about the cardiovascular risk factors.
Phase III is also
called the maintenance program. This is a supervised but non-monitored
program that also takes place within the Cardiac Rehabilitation
department. Patients remain in this program for various lengths of time
depending on physician recommendation as well as each patient's needs and
goals. When patients complete Phase III, they are given home exercise
guidelines to follow. Many patients continue exercising in the
St. Mary Medical Center Wellness Center.