Cardiovascular Complications of Cancer Therapy: Diagnosis, Pathogenesis, and Management

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Abstract—The cardiotoxicity of anticancer agents can lead to significant complications that can affect patients being treated for various malignancies. The severity of such toxicity depends on many factors such as the molecular site of action, the immediate and cumulative dose, the method of administration, the presence of any underlying cardiac condition, and the demographics of the patient. Moreover, toxicity can be affected by current or previous treatment with other antineoplastic agents. Cardiotoxic effects can occur immediately during administration of the drug, or they may not manifest themselves until months or years after the patient has been treated. In this article we review commonly used chemotherapy agents, including several recently approved medications, for their propensity to cause cardiotoxicity. Further research will be required to more accurately predict which patients are at risk for developing cardiotoxicity. In addition, management plans, as well as strategies to reduce cardiotoxicity, need to be developed.

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