Early advice and information
Once someone is admitted to hospital with a heart problem (such as heart attack or coronary stent) a member of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Team will try to see them at least once while they are on the ward to:
- explain what has happened
- give them an idea of what to expect as they recover
- offer advice on what they should do next to try to lower the risk of heart problems in the future.
We’ll also give them written information to help explain this.
If someone is not seen on the ward, then a member of the team will phone at the earliest opportunity to offer advice and support. If appropriate a home visit can be arranged.
We have recorded a series of education sessions which you can access. These will give you more information about your heart and how to help yourself.
We also provide a wide range of written information and leaflets for patients and their family to take away with them.
The team can also provide you access to a health app.
Information sessions include:
- healthy eating – information on a heart-healthy diet, tips on losing weight and food labelling
- benefits of exercise – general advice on what exercise to do and how to do it safely.
- understanding your heart – how the heart works, what can go wrong, what treatments are available and what all the tests mean
- medicines for the heart – an explanation of what the cardiac pills are for, why it is important to take them and what the side effects can be
- how look after your heart in the long term – what you can do to help keep your heart healthy, the common risk factors (e.g. blood pressure, cholesterol etc) and what warnings signs you should let your GP know about to trigger a referral back to Cardiology.
Once referred to the service, you and your family are invited to attend a one-to-one clinic appointment or a telephone appointment with a member of the team to assess what help you may need in your recovery.
You may also undergo a supervised walking test to check your level of fitness before being referred to an exercise class.
If you’re referred to our service you have the opportunity to come to a course of weekly exercise sessions to help gain the knowedge, confidence and motivation to carry on exercising for life.
These classes are supervised by members of the rehab team and are in different venues in hospital and in the community for your choice and convenience.
The exercise classes are also attended by Cardiac Buddies.
Home exercise programme
If you can’t attend the exercise sessions or prefer the convenience of exercising at home, then we can offer a home-based service and exercise DVD or online links to exercise videos or access to a health app to follow, or a more individual programme based on your needs. These can be followed up by phone or a home visit if needed.
A relaxation CD is also available which includes the following files you can download and listen to:
Advice on long-term maintenance
At the end of the rehab programme we’ll encourage you to continue with what you’ve learnt forever including joining a gym or an exercise class with a cardiac-trained instructor if possible.
You can also access the rehab team at any time in the future for advice and support.