Overview

Cardiac rehabilitation, also called cardiac rehab, is a customized outpatient program of exercise and education. Cardiac rehabilitation is designed to help you improve your health and help you recover from a heart attack, other forms of heart disease or surgery to treat heart disease.

Cardiac rehabilitation often involves exercise training, emotional support and education about lifestyle changes to reduce your heart disease risk, such as eating a heart-healthy diet, keeping a healthy weight and quitting smoking.

The goals of cardiac rehabilitation include establishing an individualized plan to help you regain strength, preventing your condition from worsening, reducing your risk of future heart problems, and improving your health and quality of life.

Research has found that cardiac rehabilitation programs can reduce your risk of death from heart disease and reduce your risk of future heart problems. The American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology recommend cardiac rehabilitation programs.

Mayo Clinic's approach