Enhanced monitoring and new technologic advancements are certainly useful in determining whether patients are at risk or are developing cardio-toxicities due to certain cytotoxic therapies. However, keeping the lines of communication open between the different healthcare teams managing the patient can also help in the detection of treatment-related complications.

Co-investigator Maryam Lustberg, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Ohio State University, said oncologists now need to work closely with cardiologists when managing patients with breast cancer.  This collaboration, according to Dr. Lustberg, is now more important than ever and will become a bigger issue as more women live 30 and 40 years beyond their initial diagnosis.


Continue Reading

“I think an oncologist/cardiologist collaboration has good potential to lower morbidity,” Dr. Lustberg told ChemotherapyAdvisor.com.  “A partnership is going to be essential to take care of these patients. We need to add to the partnership primary care physicians because they are often the first ones to see a problem.  So, all three areas need to collaborate together.  We need to be focusing on treatment summaries so all their physicians know what cancer therapies they have received and what the potential complications may be.”


References

1) Howlader N, Noone AM, Krapcho M, et. al. (eds). SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975–2009 (Vintage 2009 Populations). Bethesda, MD: National Cancer Institute; 2012. Retrieved September 7, 2012.
2) Bowles EJ, Wellman R, Feigelson HS, et al. Risk of heart failure in breast cancer patients after anthracycline and trastuzumab treatment: a retrospective cohort study. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2012;104(17):1293-3051305. doi: 10.1093/jnci/djs317.

3) Chen J, Long JB, Hurria A, et al. Incidence of heart failure or cardiomyopathy after adjuvant trastuzumab therapy for breast cancer. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2012;60(24):2504-122512. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2012.07.068. Epub 2012 Nov 14.

4) Children’s Oncology Group. Health Effects After Anthracycline and Radiation Therapy (HEART): Dexrazoxane and Prevention of Anthracycline-related Cardiomyopathy.  At: ClinicalTrials.gov [Internet]. Arcadia, CA. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01790152.

5) University Hospital, Akershus; Prevention of Cardiac Dysfunction During Adjuvant Breast Cancer Therapy (PRADA). At: ClinicalTrials.gov [Internet]. Oslo, Norway. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01434134.

6) Lenihan DJ, Cardinale DM. Late cardiac effects of cancer treatment. J Clin Oncol. 2012;30(30):3657-643664. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2012.45.2938. Epub 2012 Sep 24.

7) American Heart Association Report: Drug trio improved effectiveness of cancer treatment, protected heart. November 6, 2012. http://newsroom.heart.org/news/drug-trio-improved-effectiveness-239566. Accessed April 11, 2013.