Keeping Me Well - Cardiff and Vale University Hospital

Recovery from a cardiac event

The Cardiac Rehabilitation Service

Two ladies creating a heart symbol by joining hands together

We aim to improve the health and wellbeing of people who have heart problems, by offering advice and support to assist you to return to living life as fully as possible following a cardiac event

Everyone’s needs are different, and the service we offer is based on the best option for you. We will put together an individualized programme of exercise, education and psychological support.

The Cardiac Rehabilitation Service runs at the University Hospital of Wales, University Hospital Llandough and Llandaff North Hub.  Our service is run by experienced Cardiac Rehab Specialist Nurses and Physiotherapists with access to an Occupational Therapist, Dietitican and Pharmacist.

Cardiac Rehabilitation doesn’t change your past but it can help improve your future.

First steps to recovery

During your admission to hospital, we will visit you and discuss diagnosis and recovery. Following your discharge from hospital we will follow you up by telephone and then arrange an appointment with you. We will discuss a recovery plan, risk factor management and set goals. 

Patients are individually assessed by a Cardiac Nurse and a Physiotherapist, and a structured programme of exercise and education is offered with patients who have had similar experiences. The education talks will give you the opportunity to discuss your diet, medication, blood pressure and other risk factors and learn more about your condition.

Cardiac Rehabilitation Early Walking Programme

When you are discharged home after a cardiac event, a gentle, progressive walking programme is recommended. This will build up your activity levels in a gradual manner in preparation for the Phase III Exercise programme.

Support with your ongoing recovery

This is a series of six talks delivered remotely via Microsoft Teams accessed from your computer, tablet or mobile phone.

These take place on Wednesdays from 11am-12noon.

Subjects include:

  • Healthy Eating
  • Medication
  • Stress management
  • Physical activity
  • Understanding your condition
  • Risk factors.

You will learn how to exercise safely, including the importance of warming up, cooling down and working at the right level of intensity.

You will be invited for an assessment with the Physiotherapist who will assess your functional level, discuss your individual physical activity goals and the exercise options available to help you achieve these:

  • 8 weekly supervised group exercise classes.
    Exercises can be adapted to suit all abilities
  • 8 weekly gym based group exercise sessions.
    “Higher level” exercise using gym equipment
  • Home exercise plans
    A variety of exercise circuits available including seated options. Any home exercise equipment can be incorporated into an individualized plan. It will be supported by two weekly telephone calls
  • Individual exercise sessions
    A maximum of two sessions. For practical guidance and advice on returning to specific sports and activities
  • 8 weekly virtual exercise sessions

The Cardiac Rehab Specialist Nurses can offer advice and support based on many years of expertise in cardiology and cardiac surgery.  We will support your recovery by providing: 

  • knowledge and understanding of your cardiac condition
  • answering your questions on cardiology, heart attacks and cardiac surgery
  • support and advice on medication
  • discussion around your recovery plan
  • psychological support
  • lifestyle advice

We also signpost to other services such as Lipid clinic, Smoking cessation, Occupational Therapy, Dietetics, Psychology and Sexual Health.

An Occupational Therapist can support you in your understanding of the effect of your cardiac event. You might be anxious or low in mood or angry about what has happened to you. The Occupational Therapist will listen and help you to understand the psychological impact of your cardiac event and support you in rebuilding your confidence as you recover.

We can support you in managing your condition through finding coping strategies to help establish a healthy lifestyle, encouraging a balance of occupations, i.e. work, rest and play, help you in returning to or finding new enjoyable activities, whilst learning to pace safely, and improve confidence to return to usual daily activities including returning to work.

We can help with techniques and coping strategies to manage anxiety, stress and/ or depression and advise regarding the benefits and importance of relaxation techniques. We often work with people on improving sleep or fatigue.

Occupational Therapists aim to help you live your life, your way. Appointments will focus on your wellbeing and your ability to do the things you want to do.

A Cardiac Rehab Dietitian can help you make positive lifestyle changes, including eating a balanced diet, that will help improve your heart health and reduce the risk of further heart problems.

You can join in on our healthy eating education talk or we can offer individual dietary advice on healthy eating for the heart, weight management, diabetes and other conditions which may need nutrition support as part of its management to support your recovery.

We help you understand a healthy approach to food and how to get into good eating habits. It is important to find ways on how to make a balanced diet work for you. Eating healthily can be tasty, simple and doesn’t have to take extra time.

We encourage making gradual, long-term changes and to enjoy the food you eat.

Contact Us

The Cardiac Rehab office is open Monday-Friday 8am-4pm

Tel: 029 218743384


Keeping Me Well - Cardiff and Vale University Hospital

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