Chest pain centers in Nashville
If you or a loved one is experiencing chest pain, it’s important to get medical care immediately. When you choose Ascension Saint Thomas Chest Pain Centers, you get experienced heart specialists delivering a wide range of advanced heart care from diagnosis and treatment to rehabilitation. Our Chest Pain Centers are certified by The Joint Commission, with more than 70 specialists at 45 locations throughout Middle Tennessee and Kentucky. If you need follow-up care, your doctor will work with you on a care plan and connect you to specialty heart programs including atrial fibrillation (AFib), valve and structural heart, advanced heart failure, and heart transplant.
Know the signs of a heart attack
A heart attack doesn’t always start with severe chest pain. Some heart attacks begin suddenly, while others start with mild discomfort. Watch for these symptoms of heart attack in both men and women:
- Chest discomfort, pressure, or pain
- Difficulty breathing independent of activity
- Lightheadedness or loss of consciousness
- New weakness or fatigue
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Sudden arm (particularly left arm), jaw, neck, back pain
If you are experiencing chest pain, especially in combination with jaw or arm pain, lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting or difficulty breathing, you might be having a heart attack. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room right away.
Care teams at Ascension Saint Thomas Chest Pain Centers work closely with emergency medical services to deliver emergency heart care when and where you need it.
Who can participate in cardiac rehabilitation?
Cardiac rehabilitation is often recommended as part of your heart care plan if you have or had:
- Coronary stenting
- Heart attack
- Heart failure
- Heart or heart-lung transplant
- Heart surgery
A doctor's referral is required to participate in the program. Medicare Part B and other private health insurance plans provide a covered benefit for participating in general or intensive cardiac rehabilitation.
Cardiac rehabilitation: Phase I
Phase I of cardiac rehabilitation begins shortly after your diagnosis or heart procedure. Your rehabilitation care team includes cardiac nurses, exercise psychologists and physical therapists who provide guidance on nutrition, exercise and long-term care. The cardiac rehabilitation program at Ascension Saint Thomas is certified by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation.
Cardiac rehabilitation: Phase II
Phase II of cardiac rehabilitation is a medically supervised outpatient program that takes place at a hospital or clinic. Most patients attend 36 appointments where they focus on exercise therapy and health education. Talk to your doctor and ask if Phase II cardiac rehabilitation is right for you.
What to expect during cardiac rehabilitation
During cardiac rehabilitation, exercise therapy is prescribed and performed two to three times a week. A cardiac nurse or exercise psychologist will provide direction and support throughout each session. Your exercise program is tailored to your specific needs (i.e. your health and physical ability). Your care team will carefully monitor your blood pressure, heart rate, heart rhythm, and overall response to activity.
In addition to your exercise program, you may attend weekly health classes to help you with lifestyle changes, including stress management and diet.