Cardiac Rehab Benefit

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sticking with a cardiac rehab program in the aftermath of heart surgery can be a real lifesaver. Dr. Edward Hill discusses a study by researchers at the Mayo Clinic that looked at cardiac rehab in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Patients in a cardiac rehabilitation program that combines exercise, nutrition and counseling are more likely to live longer after angioplasty.

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic reviewed the outcomes of patients who had undergone angioplasty during a 14-year period. Of the nearly 2,400 records they reviewed, those patients who had participated in the clinics cardiac rehab program were nearly 50 percent less likely to die than patients who had not participated.

Cardiac rehab programs are designed to improve a patients heart health. Individually tailored to each patients needs and risk factors, they include personalized exercise regimens and healthy eating plans, along with mental health counseling when needed and group classes for support. Nurses, exercise specialists, dietitians and psychologists often make up a patients rehab team, which is overseen by a doctor.

Despite the high success rate of cardiac rehab among patients who have coronary artery disease, the programs remain underused. Researchers hope this study changes that.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.