Heart failure is not curable but it is controllable. It generally starts with medical management including:
- Low-salt/sodium diet
- Limit and monitor fluid intake
- Moderate activity
- Manage blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, weight and stress
- Restrict/eliminate alcohol, tobacco and second-hand smoke
- See your doctor regularly to manage your condition
- Cardiac rehab
Cardiac rehab for heart failure
Cardiac rehab positively impacts the health and physical performance of those with heart disease and those at risk for heart disease. It’s has been shown to:
- Significantly reduce future cardiovascular events
- Slow the progression and reduce the severity of coronary artery disease
- Increase strength and exercise tolerance
- Improve heart function, overall health and quality of life
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has determined that evidence is sufficient to expand coverage for cardiac rehabilitation services to qualified patients with stable, chronic heart failure (check with your doctor to see if you qualify).
If you have heart failure, talk with your doctor about possible benefits from cardiac rehab or contact Gundersen Exercise Physiology for more information at (608) 775-2659.
Heart Failure Clinic
Gundersen established the Heart Failure Clinic in 1998. The Clinic provides comprehensive care for patients with heart failure including treatment with lifestyle changes and medication, and helping patients understand and follow a plan of care. The Heart Failure Clinic provides consistent and frequent follow-up care in collaboration with your primary provider.
Ventricular Assist Device
A patient with advanced heart failure who has exhausted medical therapies may be a candidate for an implanted ventricular assist device (VAD) as either a bridge to a heart transplant or, if not eligible for transplant, as a long-term support.
For additional information about heart failure and treatment options talk with your primary care doctor, cardiologist or other healthcare provider.