Saturday, November 5, 2011

Cardiac rehab tops secondary prevent guidelines

Participation in a comprehensive outpatient cardiac rehabilitation program is strongly recommended in updated American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology guidelines for secondary prevention in patients with atherosclerotic vascular disease.
Patients who have an acute coronary syndrome or who have just undergone CABG or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) should be referred to a cardiac rehab program no later than the first follow-up office visit, according to a Class I recommendation from a writing group chaired by Sidney Smith Jr., MD, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
All eligible outpatients with an acute coronary syndrome, a history of CABG or PCI, chronic angina, peripheral artery disease, or a combination of those factors within the past year should be referred for a comprehensive outpatient cardiovascular rehab program, although low-risk patients can use a home-based program, the guidance stated.
In addition, the authors included a Class IIa recommendation stating that an exercise-based outpatient cardiac rehab program can be safe and beneficial for stable patients with a history of heart failure.
The guidelines, which update a previous document published in 2006 and cover a wide range of preventive therapies, were published online in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association and the Journal of the American College of Cardiology

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