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February 2007: Cardiac Rehabilitation: The Key to Building and Maintaining Heart Health

01 Feb 2007

Dr. Amjad Sheikh is the director of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at Weiss. He believes that one of the most important steps you can take to improve and maintain heart health after suffering a heart attack or coronary intervention is to participate in a comprehensive rehabilitation program. Weiss’ Cardiac Rehabilitation Program offers a team approach to your recovery. The program focuses on conditioning the heart muscle and improving cardiovascular fitness to help patients recover from heart disease and return to an active lifestyle.

Dr. Amjad Sheikh
Director, Cardiac Diagnostic and Rehabilitation Centers at Weiss
Chair, Department of Medicine
Weiss Memorial Hospital
Phone: (773) 564-5898
Fax: (773) 564-5911

Cardiac Rehabilitation: The Key to Building and Maintaining Heart Health

According to the American Heart Association, coronary heart disease is the number one killer in the United States today. Chances are you or someone you know has experienced heart disease first hand through a heart attack or need for surgical intervention, such as a coronary artery bypass or stent placement.

Once you or a loved one has experienced a heart problem or procedure, the next step is to enter a cardiac rehabilitation program to begin your journey toward a stronger, healthier heart.

Where to start
The first steps toward recovery include:

  • Changing your eating habits – following a healthy diet.
  • Reducing stress – at home and at work.
  • Following a physician-approved exercise program – slowly increasing your physical activity to an appropriate level of physical exertion.
  • Taking the proper recovery and maintenance medications.

A good cardiac rehabilitation program will guide you through all of these steps and keep you on the right track toward recovery.

Weiss’ Three-Phase Program

Phase I begins in the hospital after you’ve experienced a heart problem or had a procedure performed. Cardiac rehabilitation begins immediately with personalized educational discussions and counseling, and gentle exercise therapy.

Phase II begins three weeks after hospital discharge and includes three, one-hour sessions per week, for 12 weeks. The rehab physician and staff establish the appropriate cardiac exercises for you and continuously monitor your progress and safety.

Phase III is a continued outpatient exercise program that includes a long-term health care plan for you with dietary guidelines and a supervised exercise program.

Cardiac rehabilitation is your best path toward building a stronger heart. Getting the help you need right from the start will strengthen your chances for a full recovery. For more information about the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at Weiss visit Cardiac Rehabilitation or call (773) 564-5898.