Cardiac Rehabilitation

The Joel E. Smilow Heart Institute at Bridgeport Hospital offers outpatient cardiac rehabilitation as a medically supervised exercise- and education-based program designed to strengthen your heart, increase your vitality, and help make lifestyle changes to reduce your risk for future cardiac events. The Bridgeport Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation Program is certified by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation.

Cardiac rehabilitation is strongly recommended for anyone who has recently had:

  • A heart attack
  • An angioplasty/stent
  • Chronic stable angina
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Coronary bypass surgery
  • Heart transplant
  • Heart valve repair or replacement surgery
  • Peripheral arterial disease with symptoms

A Comprehensive Approach

The 60-minute exercise component includes:
  • Aerobics
  • Flexibility
  • Resistance training with weights, bands, and stability balls

The program also includes an education component. Led by nurses and exercise physiologists, education will precede or follow your exercise session. Family and friends are welcome to attend education classes. Conversing with others who have experienced a similar cardiac event can provide you with valuable emotional support as you recover.  

 Education topics include:

  • Diet and nutrition
  • Exercise guidelines
  • Medications
  • Risk factor reduction
  • Stress management
  • Travel

Professional, Caring Staff

A team of cardiac nurses and exercise physiologists monitors your heart rate and rhythm and guides your progression. Blood pressure, blood sugar (for those with diabetes), and EKG are assessed during each visit. Exercise is tailored to a participant's needs and physical capability. The cardiac rehabilitation team stays in close contact with your physician regarding your progression.  

Costs and Insurance

Most insurance plans, including Medicare, cover up to 36 cardiac rehabilitation sessions for the listed conditions, procedures. You are encouraged to ask your insurance carrier about your specific coverage. Your cardiologist, or vascular surgeon if the condition is peripheral arterial disease, will need to refer you to the program after hospital discharge. The cardiac rehabilitation team can assist you with this process.

For class schedules and more information, please call 203-256-5896.