Heart & Vascular Care

If you suffer a heart attack, heart disease, stroke or other condition that affects the circulatory system you need lifesaving treatment right away. The heart and vascular specialists at Indiana University Health provide comprehensive diagnosis and treatment for all conditions affecting the heart and vascular system, including atherosclerosis (a buildup in the arteries), coronary artery disease, peripheral arterial disease and more.

At Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Heart & Vascular Care, our team of multidisciplinary specialists includes cardiologists, cardiac surgeons and clinical specialists. We collaborate to deliver the most advanced treatment options, caring for patients with the most common problems to the most complex. Board certified cardiologists and board certified cardiothoracic surgeons, along with a team of nurses, technologists and other health professionals, care for patients and help you make an individualized plan for the treatment of your condition.

From diagnosing the cause of chest pain, to cardiac surgery, to managing your condition and helping you get back on your feet with cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, IU Health Bloomington Hospital Heart & Vascular Care offers the most comprehensive cardiovascular programs in south central Indiana.

Patients recovering from cardiovascular surgery have a special, dedicated unit within Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital––the Cardiovascular Recovery Unit (CVR). Immediately following surgery, patients are closely monitored with advanced telemetry equipment. As patients recover, portable monitors are available so they can move around on their own in preparation for going home.

At the Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Advanced Heart Care Center, we assess patients for worsening congestive heart failure (CHF) and educate them about how to best care for themselves. Once patients are released, the Advanced Heart Care teams follow up by phone and meets with each patient on a regular basis at the IU Health Bloomington Hospital Advanced Heart Care Center to provide health maintenance and screen for any signs of worsening CHF.

IU Health Bloomington Hospital is designated as a Blue Distinction Center by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in the area of cardiac care. Blue Distinction Center certification is awarded only to select programs that emphasize best practice care and achieve excellent outcomes. Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality care and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications following certain cardiac procedures, as well as lower rates of healthcare associated infections compared with their peers.

Diagnostic Testing

When you are having chest pain, rapid response is critical to determine the cause.

Our advanced diagnostic tests and equipment include:

  • 64-slice computed tomography (CT) scanner. This technology captures 64 pictures of your heart each second. With these clear images, physicians are able to see aspects of the cardiovascular system that before could only be seen through invasive tests.
  • Cardiac catheterization. Cardiac catheterizations are performed in advanced cardiac catheterization laboratories to determine the extent of any blockages in your coronary arteries. If a blockage is found and intervention is necessary, cardiologists can perform several non-surgical procedures at these locations.
  • Echocardiogram (ECHO). Using high frequency sound waves, the ECHO evaluates the mechanical function of your heart and detects any valvular abnormalities or abnormalities caused by disease, infection or trauma.
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG). An EKG, also known as a 12-lead EKG, records the electrical activity of your heart. This exam may be performed by paramedics in the field and relayed back to the emergency room physician, enabling life-saving techniques to be initiated. An EKG can also be performed to identify electrical conduction disturbances or damage to the heart and to evaluate the effects of cardiac medicines.
  • Graded exercise test/stress tests. A graded exercise test, or stress test, is performed to evaluate your heart's response to physical stress or exercise. It may be administered in a number of ways with physical exercise or by using medicines to simulate the effects of exercise. The stress test allows cardiologists to determine the presence and/or severity of heart disease in addition to the cause of chest or other cardiac pain.

Using these latest innovative technologies, our teams of physicians and medical professionals work to quickly and accurately diagnose your heart condition. 

Level One Heart Attack Program

Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Heart & Vascular Care, Emergency Medicine and Emergency Medical Transport Services are part of our Level One Heart Attack Program, which streamlines the diagnosis, treatment and transport of patients with heart attacks. Treatment begins the minute paramedics arrive at the scene or the patient enters the Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Emergency Department. 

As part of the Level One Heart Attack Program, all caregivers who aid heart attack patients are using consistent, best-practice care for the recognition and treatment of acute ST elevated myocardial infarctions, or STEMIs.

The Level One Heart Attack Program ensures that people with a heart attack are quickly identified, stabilized and transported to IU Health Bloomington Hospital where a 24/7 cardiac catheterization staff, cardiologists and other emergency care team members are assembled and prepared for your arrival.

The Level One Heart Attack Program can improve clinical outcomes for patients experiencing a heart attack by rapidly activating a trained team specialized in best practice care for heart attacks.

Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation

After cardiovascular surgery or experiencing a cardiovascular event like a heart attack, a member of our Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Program will visit you. You will receive our Heart Owners Manual, a binder of educational information that explains tests and procedures, what to expect after leaving the hospital and how to get back to your normal routine. An IU Health Bloomington Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation team member will review the information with you, provide education specific to your condition and answer any questions you may have.

IU Health Bloomington Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation offers a full continuum of care from inpatient to outpatient services, from testing acute illness to long-term health maintenance.

Before entering the IU Health Bloomington Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Program, each participant undergoes an extensive examination that may include some or all of the following:

  • A physical assessment and medical history
  • Graded exercise testing (stress test) and/or pulmonary function test
  • Evaluation of body composition
  • Blood lipid determination

An individual exercise program is then developed using your assessment results.

The goals of the program are to:

The Cardiac Rehabilitation Program consists of the following phases:

  • Phase One. Phase One includes hospital inpatient education and low-level exercise for patients recovering from heart attacks, angina, coronary artery bypass surgery, valve replacement, percutaneous Tran luminal coronary interventions, (i.e. angioplasty, stent, arthrectomy) or other types of heart disease.
  • Phase Two. Phase Two includes continuously monitored outpatient exercise and risk factor reduction program conducted at IU Health Bloomington Hospital for patients with recent heart attacks, coronary artery bypass surgery, angioplasty, stent placement or other symptoms of coronary disease.
  • Phase Three. Phase Three includes intermittently monitored exercise and risk factor management programs conducted at the Monroe County Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) or at IU Health Bloomington Hospital for participants who have completed Phase Two or are at risk for developing coronary artery disease or pulmonary disease. This program is under the direction of an exercise specialist, registered nurses, volunteer physicians, nurse practitioners and paramedics.

The Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program consists of the following phases:

  • Phase One. Phase One includes hospital inpatient education and low-level exercise for patients recovering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), asthma, bronchitis, bronchiectasis, interstitial or restrictive lung disease.
  • Phase Two. Phase Two includes continuously monitored outpatient exercise and risk factor education program conducted at IU Health facilities for patients with any type of lung disease.
  • Phase Three. Phase Three includes intermittently monitored exercise and risk factor management programs conducted at the Monroe County YMCA or at IU Health Bloomington Hospital for participants who have completed Phase Two or need supervision during exercise. This program is under the direction of volunteer physicians, nurse practitioners, paramedics, exercise specialists and registered nurses.

A cardiopulmonary rehabilitation volunteer who has experienced a cardiovascular surgery or a cardiac event is available to offer support and assistance regarding concerns, common reactions and non-medical questions.

IU Health Bloomington Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation also offers multiple locations in south central Indiana and partners with the Monroe County YMCA to ensure cardiopulmonary rehabilitation services are accessible to those in our community.

Advanced Heart Care Center

Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough oxygenated blood to meet the needs of the body's other organs. The heart keeps pumping, but not as efficiently as a healthy heart. Usually, the loss in the heart's pumping action is a symptom of an underlying heart problem. Heart failure affects nearly five million U.S. adults. It is on the rise with an estimated 400,000 to 700,000 new cases each year.

The Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital Advanced Heart Care Center works to assess patients for worsening congestive heart failure and educate them as to how to best care for themselves. Inpatients diagnosed with CHF are visited during their stay by a CHF nurse to provide education for both the patient and family. Once patients are released, the CHF staff follows up by phone and meets with the patient on a regular basis at the IU Health Bloomington Hospital Advanced Heart Care Center to provide health maintenance and screen for any signs of worsening CHF.

Download our Heart Care Zones chart.