Tim began a cardiac rehab exercise and education program that open heart surgery patients start 14 days after they get home. - Genesis HealthCare System - Zanesville, Ohio

Cardiac Rehab Helps Patient Recover After Heart Surgery

Prescribed exercise and education program for patients

Tim Starrett was having breathing problems. He knew with his history of heart problems that he needed to figure out what was wrong. He was able to get a stress test and an appointment with Anwar Din, MD, cardiologist and medical director, Genesis Heart & Vascular Rehab. A heart catheterization determined open heart surgery was necessary.

Tim had coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery at Genesis. After five days in the hospital, Tim went home to recuperate. But he soon became anxious to get back to his active life as a high school cross country coach.

14-day cardiac rehab program 

Tim began an exercise and education program that open heart surgery patients start 14 days after they get home. During the hour-long exercise sessions, Tim wore a monitor to measure his blood pressure and heart rate. “The exercise plan was approved by my doctor, and the staff was always there to help anytime I needed anything,” Tim said.

“Tim worked hard doing aerobic exercises and resistance training, and he increased his exercise capacity by 99 percent – which is amazing,” said Belinda Mahon, exercise physiology therapist, Genesis Heart & Vascular Rehab. The exercise programs can lower blood pressure, decrease cholesterol levels, lessen the likelihood of strokes, and increase longevity. “I recommend all cardiac patients participate in Genesis' Heart & Vascular Rehab because the benefits are so great,” said Dr. Din.

After completing “See You in Fourteen,” Tim found the program so helpful that he enrolled in the Genesis Risk Interventional Program (GRIP). “I’d recommend the exercise programs to anyone who has heart problems. It’s nice to know I could rely on the care from my friends and neighbors here at Genesis,” Tim said.

You can read Tim’s entire story, and other stories about people in our community in this issue of LiveWell magazine.

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