Entering the cardiac ICU can be scary- both for patients and also for the loved ones supporting them. However, there are many different reasons why a person needs to use these hospital services. While some are indeed life-threatening, others are more benign. Understanding what happens in the cardiac ICU will help you and your loved ones feel prepared. Here’s what you need to know.
What is the Cardiac ICU?
A cardiac ICU (or CCU) is a special wing of the hospital that’s dedicated to treating serious heart issues. Patients in the CCU will receive specialized care and close medical monitoring, both from 24-hour nursing staff and also from cardiac monitoring tools.
Who Needs CCU Services?
Patients need CCU care for several different reasons. Of course, the most obvious are serious, acute cardiac conditions like angina, cardiac arrhythmia, and heart failure. The CCU is also used to care for patients following heart surgery, as well as for patients who need cardiac monitoring while dealing with another health issue (such as patients with pre-existing heart conditions).
Can Patients Have Visitors?
Generally speaking, CCU patients can have visitors, though the visiting guidelines might be more strict than other hospital units. For instance, the number of visitors might be limited and visiting hours might be reduced. The rules for visiting the unit might also be different, as patients will be dealing with serious conditions. If you’d like to visit someone in the cardiac ICU, their care team will help you understand the rules and regulations.
What Happens Next?
CCUs are designed to provide critical, short-term care. After staying in a cardiac ICU, patients are usually transferred to another hospital unit for less critical care. In this unit, patients will still be monitored and heart conditions will still be treated. The goal is to eventually send patients home, where they can continue their care with the help of outpatient services.
Cardiac Care at EHS
Emergency Hospital Systems offers a range of cardiac services to patients in the Houston area. From minor issues to cardiac ICU care, we are here to provide you with caring, comfortable, knowledgeable care. Click here to learn more about our cardiology services.