Cardiac & Pulmonary Rehabilitation
Take part in the cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation program at Nash UNC Health Care, where you’ll receive well-rounded support to lessen symptoms and increase your quality of life.
What’s Cardiac & Pulmonary Rehab?
Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation improves your cardiac (heart), pulmonary (respiratory), and overall health. The program includes:
Benefits of the Program
The program can help you:
Feel confident in the high quality of our program because our patients report high satisfaction with the care they received.
Is the Program Right for Me?
Your doctor may recommend cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation if you have:
- Certain heart procedures, such as bypass surgery, stent placement, or valve surgery
- Heart attack in the last 12 months
- Heart condition, such as chronic congestive heart failure
- Heart disease risk factorsHeart or lung transplant
- Respiratory (pulmonary) condition, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), emphysema, pulmonary fibrosis, or sarcoidosis
Enjoy peace of mind knowing cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation can help prevent complications that could lead to an expensive trip to the emergency room or hospitalization.
Your First Appointment
Feel free to bring a loved one or support person with you to your first consultation. Expect to:
- Meet our staff
- Talk about your medical history
- Receive a detailed overview of the cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation program
- Get answers to any questions
- Tour our facility and see our exercise equipment
- Plan your rehabilitation timeline and schedule
Most patients start their rehabilitation program two to three days after their consultation.
You’ll take a simple, six-minute walking test at the beginning and end of the program. We’ll use the test to:
- Understand your current level of fitness
- Help you set goals
- Customize your rehabilitation program so it’s safe and effective for you
- Measure your progress
Rest assured your program will start slowly and at a pace that’s right for you. You’ll work with our team to build up to more challenging exercises. At the end of your program, you’ll do the walk test again. Most people have a boost of confidence because they’ve improved their energy levels and decreased symptoms like shortness of breath.
What to Expect
Attend classes two to three days a week with 15 to 20 other patients all following their own unique plans. You’ll:
- Do exercises under staff supervision
- Meet with a dietitian for one-on-one nutrition guidance and, if needed, help to lose or manage your weight
- Get help to quit smoking if you smoke
- Learn about improving breathing and respiratory function
- Learn how to take your medications safely
- Receive education about living a heart-healthy life and lowering risk factors for future heart and respiratory problems
Most classes last up to an hour and a half, with noncontinuous exercise for 45 to 60 minutes.
Types of Activities
Participate in aerobic, strength training, stretching, and flexibility activities in a large room designed for cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation.
Access more than 25 pieces of exercise equipment, many of which are nonweight bearing machines. This means you can work out with less impact and strain on your body. Improve fitness using:
- Elliptical trainer, a stationary machine used to walk or run without putting pressure on the joints
- Recumbent stepper, a device you sit on while moving your arms and legs
- Stationary and recumbent bicycles, which let you pedal your feet and legs while sitting upright or in a laidback position
- Total body ergometer, piece of equipment that lets you do cardio exercises using your arms and legs
- Treadmill, a device for walking, climbing, or running while you stay in place
- Walking track
Feel peace of mind you’ll be closely observed during exercise by our helpful staff as well as through telemetry monitoring. The monitor is a device that collects information about your heart’s electrical activity, so we can make sure you stay safe while you work out.
You can bring a loved one to one-on-one appointments. Your friends and family members can stay in a comfortable waiting area while you attend exercise or education classes.
Exercising at Home
On days you do not attend class, do the home exercises your team recommends to continue making progress toward your goals. Continue to follow your home exercise routine after the program ends.
Your Rehabilitation Team
Partner with knowledgeable, friendly experts who get to know you and encourage you every step of the way. You may work with:
- Dietitian – Food and nutrition expert
- Exercise physiologist – Professional with advanced education in using physical activity to improve health and manage conditions
- Registered nurse (RN) – Licensed nurse who provides patient care
- Respiratory therapist – Medical professional who helps assess and treat lung and breathing problems
Trust in the quality and effectiveness of our services because our program is overseen by our medical director, a cardiologist. A cardiologist is a doctor who specializes in preventing and treating heart conditions.
Life Support Certified
Rest assured our staff has the training to recognize and quickly react in case of an emergency. All team members hold certification in Basic Life Support (BLS) and most are certified in Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) by the American Heart Association.
How Much Does it Cost?
Before your first appointment, work with our staff to verify your insurance. We’ll help you understand what it covers and if you have a copay or out-of-pocket costs. If needed, we’ll connect with you financial assistance.