A collaboration of help and support for those who have had Cancer treatments.
Cancer patients and survivors often face unique heart health challenges since the treatments that help you fight cancer can also damage your heart. Cardio-Oncology is a medical subspecialty focused on the management of heart diseases in patients with cancer.
At the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, our cardiologist, who are specially-trained in cardio-oncology, use the latest technology and research to prevent, detect and treat heart disease in cancer patients before, during and after treatment for cancer. Our goal is to prevent heart damage caused by cancer treatments and manage care for patients who are fighting both cancer and heart disease.
Services we offer
- Offering advice and guidance to people with a high risk of heart disease or existing heart disease before cancer therapy and evaluating how to prevent, monitor and treat heart conditions
- Discussing cancer treatment options with oncologists for people at high risk of heart disease or existing heart disease
- Providing treatment for heart conditions, including heart medications if needed
- Monitoring people with heart disease or at risk of heart disease before and during cancer therapy with regular imaging tests and blood tests to look for signs of heart complications
- Monitoring and treating heart complications that may develop during cancer therapy as a result of taking certain chemotherapy drugs or receiving radiation therapy to the chest area
- Screening for heart complications after cancer therapy, especially people who have taken certain chemotherapy drugs or have had radiation therapy to the chest area
- Treating heart conditions or complications that may develop after cancer therapy due to specific chemotherapy drugs or radiation therapy to the chest area
- Providing lifestyle coaching for people after cancer therapy, such as making lifestyle changes to help reduce the risk of heart disease and maintain health, including eating a heart-healthy diet and exercise
Treatment: Before, during, and after cancer care
Some cancer patients may have a high risk of heart disease, have existing heart disease, or develop heart disease or heart complications after cancer therapy. Our cardiologists team up with cancer doctors to care for the patient’s heart before, during and after cancer treatment. Together, we help develop treatment plans that reduce the risk for cardiovascular problems.
Treatment plans are personalized and based on the patient’s current heart health, personal medical history, and family medical history. These treatments don’t interrupt cancer care, but provide additional support that gives long-term benefits. We closely monitor the patient’s heart health throughout treatment. Good heart health helps patients respond better to therapies, making care more effective and can reduce the risk for heart disease for many years.
We use blood tests and advanced cardiac imaging services specific to cancer patients, including advanced echocardiographic strain imaging, nuclear PYP scanning, and cardiac MRI services, to detect heart problems early, helping us prevent serious complications.
After treatment, cancer survivors require specialized, long-term follow up care. When cancer treatment is completed, we continue to provide survivorship services alongside cancer doctors. We help create an individualized plan to help reduce long-term risk for heart disease, from medicines to regular screenings to lifestyle changes.
Peter is “living his life” thanks to the cardiac surgical care he received.
Advanced heart care
WVU Heart and Vascular Institute surgeons perform the first completely robotic-assisted aortic valve replacement, mitral valve repair, and surgical ablation for atrial fibrillation.
The experts at the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute conduct ongoing heart and vascular clinical trials and research studies.
Academics & Fellowship Programs
Learn more about the WVU School of Medicine Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery.