Quadruple bypass patient sees results in cardiac rehab
Open-heart surgery gave one man in Henderson County a new lease on life, but it was carefully managed cardiac rehab that got him back on his feet.
Jimmy Johnson, 72, kept plugging along despite feeling a cold sensation on his throat, but eventually learned that was a sign he needed a quadruple bypass.
A few weeks after heart surgery, he was on the treadmill at Pardee Cardiac Rehab in Hendersonville.
"The first session I might have done a speed of, like, 1.5," Johnson recalled.
"We provided emotional support and guided him in an exercise routine he could follow at home, as well as here," Bobbie Nelson, a registered cardiac rehab nurse, said.
Jimmy was motivated to recover. In fact, he completed 36 workouts in only 27 sessions.
"I could feel I was getting stronger every day," Johnson said. "I started going up to a grade 12 on the treadmill, with a 3.2 speed."
Jimmy also took steps to change his diet, listen to his body and educate himself about lifelong cardiac care.
"As much as I care for Jimmy, I don't want him back in our program again," Nelson said.
"I feel pretty darn good," Johnson said. "I have felt like this in several years or more."
Cardiac rehab is typically covered by insurance, but therapists say only 25 percent of heart patients take advantage of the service.