After Heart Bypass Surgery Norwalk Resident Pumps up the Beat at Cardiac Rehabilitation

Norwalk Hospital

NORWALK, Connecticut –March 1, 2016The last thing sixty-eight-year-old Norwalk resident Joseph Jimenez expected when he was on vacation last fall was a heart attack.  Four days later, that’s exactly what he had.   

While Joe and his wife Kathryn were visiting family in Miami, they decided to go for a walk after lunch one day and that’s when he started feeling a slight pressure in his chest.

Joe’s brother insisted he needed to check it out at a nearby emergency clinic. “At first, I thought he was making a bigger deal out of it than it really was,” Mr. Jimenez said. “Now, I’m glad I listened to him and thankful we did go.”  

At the clinic, Mr. Jimenez was hooked-up to an electrocardiogram (EKG), but test results were inconclusive. “Just to be on the safe side, the clinic staff called an ambulance that transported him to the hospital where he was admitted for evaluation. “Additional tests confirmed I had experienced a mild heart attack,” Mr. Jimenez said.

A cardiac catheterization procedure also revealed that two of his coronary arteries were partially blocked. That diagnosis, plus the fact he has a genetic predisposition for heart disease on both sides of the family, helped Mr. Jimenez make a decision to have heart bypass surgery.  

When they came back home, Mr. Jimenez went to his primary care physician (PCP) to bring him up-to-date on what had happened. “My PCP referred me to cardiologist Dr. David Lomnitz who reviewed my medical history and recommended I consider participating in a cardiac rehabilitation (also referred to as cardiac rehab) program,” Mr. Jimenez said. “That’s exactly what I did. I made cardiac rehab a priority for my recovery and joined the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at Norwalk Hospital.”  

Norwalk Hospital’s medically-supervised cardiac rehab program offers a “phase” approach to help patients maintain health and well-being during and after they complete cardiac rehab. Treatment plans are created by a multidisciplinary team of cardiac experts that are customized to meet the individual needs of the patient.

The program involves exercise, education, emotional and wellness support to patients following a cardiac event.    

“Although exercise is a big part of the cardiac rehabilitation program at Norwalk Hospital, it’s only one component,” said Mary Boudreau, cardiac rehabilitation supervisor.  “Each class consists of a warm-up and cool-down, stretching session, cardiovascular conditioning and an education session.”

“Whatever the exercise or where, our aim is the same - to get people back to normal daily activity as quickly and safely as possible,” Mary Boudreau said.

“I am enjoying cardiac rehab at Norwalk Hospital,” Mr. Jimenez said. “The staff is good and they really look after you.”  

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About Norwalk Hospital

Norwalk Hospital is a progressive, patient-centered regional teaching hospital serving residents of south-western Connecticut and adjacent New York. The 328-bed acute care, not-for-profit hospital offers Cardiovascular, Cancer, Orthopedic, Neurologic and Digestive Disease care with advanced diagnostics, innovative therapies and state-of-the-art surgery. The hospital is supported by its very generous community through donations to the Norwalk Hospital Foundation.

Norwalk Hospital is part of the Western Connecticut Health Network and one of the Network’s three member hospitals including Danbury Hospital and New Milford Hospital, as well as their physician groups and affiliated organizations. Share your comments with us at

About Western Connecticut Health Network

Western Connecticut Health Network is the region's premier, patient-centered health care organization serving residents of Western Connecticut and adjacent New York. The organization is anchored by three nationally recognized hospitals, Danbury Hospital, New Milford Hospital and Norwalk Hospital, as well as their affiliated organizations. In addition to the three hospitals, the continuum of care offered includes numerous medical practices and sub-specialties across the region, home health care services, a nationally renowned biomedical research institute, the Western Connecticut Health Network Foundation, the Norwalk Hospital Foundation and other affiliates. For more information, visit our websites:;; and For more information, visit Share your comments with us at; and/or