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Heart disease & cancer

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Keeping your heart healthy after a cancer diagnosis

Cancer survival rates have increased in recent years, due to new and improved chemotherapy and radiation treatments. But while these treatments save lives, they can also damage your heart, especially if you already have heart disease or are among those at high risk. Cardiac complications from cancer treatment can include heart failure, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat and ischemic (small-vessel) disease. To better understand, prevent and treat the effects of cancer therapy on the cardiovascular system, the cardiologists at the Novant Health Heart and Vascular Institute partnered with the oncologists at the Novant Health Cancer Center to develop a unique cross-specialty program called cardio-oncology. This program includes:

  • Caring for patients with heart disease currently being treated for cancer
  • Caring for patients whose cancer treatment is causing heart problems
  • Protecting the heart health of cancer patients and survivors
  • Creating cancer treatment plans that reduce the risk of heart problems
  • Researching new cancer treatments that are less harmful to the heart

At Novant Health, we know it is important to know what factors might affect you – from your course of treatment to what your health numbers say, including blood pressure and cholesterol levels. If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, talk to your Novant Health doctor so you can create an action plan to protect your heart.