Br J Hosp Med (Lond). 2020 Sep 2;81(9):1-11. doi: 10.12968/hmed.2020.0269. Epub 2020 Sep 26.
Cardio-oncology is the care of cancer patients with cardiovascular disease. The need for a dedicated subspecialty emerged to address heart failure caused by drugs such as anthracyclines and anti-human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) therapies, but over time has expanded into an exciting subspecialty with widening horizons. While still dealing with a lot of commonly recognised toxicities, such as heart failure, hypertension and coronary disease, new and revolutionary cancer therapies have been associated with challenging cardiovascular complications, requiring specialist input to manage effectively. Echocardiography is a key investigation, with advanced techniques such as three-dimensional and strain assessment allowing more accurate diagnosis and earlier detection of subtle changes. Cardiac magnetic resonance and biomarkers are useful adjuncts to aid diagnosis and management. With increasing cancer incidence and improved cancer survival rates, it is important that general cardiologists and physicians are aware of cardiac complications associated with cancer and how to manage them.