Cardiovascular Health for Patients with Cancer
The Cardio-Oncology Program at the Lifespan Cardiovascular Institute is an integrated, specialty care service that promotes cardiovascular health for the cancer patient. Opened in July of 2015, it is the only program of its kind in Rhode Island.
The program is offered for patients with cardiovascular complications of cancer or cancer therapy or with co-existing heart disease and cancer conditions. This program provides a collaborative approach to determine what plan is required to reduce the negative effects of any cancer treatments on the heart.
What makes this program unique is the close, collaborative relationship between cardiologists and oncologists. All are unified in finding the best course for patient care. Combining the expertise of both the Lifespan Cardiovascular Institute and the Lifespan Cancer Institute, our specialists provide a personal, individualized treatment plan for each patient.
Treatment is mainly with cardioprotective drugs, such as ACE inhibitors and beta blockers. These help reduce the cardiotoxicity of some chemotherapy treatments. In addition, some of the cancer therapies can cause side effects such as hypertension, arrhythmias and elevated blood sugar.
Patients are also monitored for traditional risk factors for heart disease, such as high cholesterol, smoking, obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes.
Research is currently being conducted to learn more about cardiovascular disease and how it affects our patients.