cardiac patient

Discharge Instructions


Discharge teaching will be provided to highlight cardiovascular risk factors, resuming normal activities and warning signs and symptoms associated with coronary artery disease. In addition, a general timetable for increasing your activity is included, as well as a home exercise program when appropriate. These guidelines are designed to assist in your recovery following open-heart surgery. These are intended to answer questions regarding recovery and are not to replace the advice or orders of your physician.  


Cardiac Risk Factors:

Risk factors are characteristics or behaviors that increase a person's chances of developing coronary artery disease (blocked arteries) or enhance its progression. Most risk factors can be controlled with lifestyle changes, which will reduce your risk of further heart attacks.

The major risk factors are:

  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • Elevated blood-fat levels 

Identify your Risk Factors:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • High blood lipids (fats)
  • Family history
  • Stress
  • Obesity/Overweight
  • Cholesterol (ideal is less than 200)
  • Triglycerides (ideal is less than 150)

Resuming Normal Activity

Activity Guidelines

Additional information about cardiac risk factors may  be obtained from your cardiac rehabilitation nurse.

Recovery Period

This occurs at different rates. The normal recovery period is 12 weeks. Every week you should be able to tell you are getting stronger. Call your surgeon any time if you have questions. The office number will reach the physician on-call.