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Heart One Associates

Board Certified Cardiologist, Vein Specialist, Peripheral Arterial Disease and Structural Heart Specialists located in Phoenix, AZ & Peoria, AZ & Buckeye, AZ

Chemotherapy is a widely recognized cancer treatment. But few realize it can have serious side effects that include heart disease and stroke. Heart One Associates’ team of leading cardiologists provides cardio-oncology treatment programs to reduce the risk of heart complications and support you through your cancer treatment. Call today to schedule a consultation at one of the convenient West Valley locations in Peoria, Buckeye, and Phoenix, Arizona. Call today or request an appointment online.

Chemotherapy Q & A

What is chemotherapy?

Cancer cells multiply faster than healthy cells. Chemotherapy is a drug used in cancer treatment since the 1930s because it targets fast-growing cells. Depending on the type of cancer, chemo can either destroy the fast-growing cells entirely, prevent them from growing, or shrink an existing tumor to ease symptoms. 

Chemotherapy is also used in low doses to prepare the body for a bone marrow transplant and control an overactive immune system.

When used in high doses, however, chemotherapy can cause unpleasant side effects. Some are mild and easily treatable, but others are severe.

Does chemotherapy affect the heart?

Chemotherapy can cause heart failure, especially when administered in high doses. Other heart problems caused by chemotherapy include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia)
  • Blood clots
  • Heart attack

Chemotherapy is a vital part of cancer treatment. If you're having chemotherapy, speak with your doctor at Heart One Associates about creating a custom cardio-oncology treatment plan.

Who is most at risk of heart problems from chemotherapy?

Some people are more at risk of developing heart problems caused by chemotherapy than others. Your provider at Heart One Associates may determine you as high risk for the following reasons:

  • You're female
  • You're over 60 years old
  • You're a child
  • You have a pre-existing heart condition
  • You smoke
  • You have high cholesterol
  • You have high blood pressure
  • You have diabetes
  • You have obesity

If you fall into any of the categories above, speak to your provider at Heart One Associates to find out how you can reduce your chances of developing a heart-related problem during chemotherapy treatment.

How can you maintain heart health when having chemotherapy?

The first step in preventing chemotherapy-related heart problems when starting cancer treatment is to schedule a cardiovascular risk assessment. Your doctor at Heart One Associates checks your heart health to identify whether you already have or are at risk of developing heart disease. Once they know your current heart health, they either create a custom care plan or continue to monitor your heart to ensure it remains healthy. 

You can practice preventive heart care at home by adopting healthier lifestyle choices, such as regularly exercising, eating a healthy diet, and quitting smoking.

For more information or to schedule an appointment at Heart One Associates, call today or use the online booking tool.