If you have cancer, both the disease and its treatment put you at higher risk for cardiovascular (heart) disease. Cancer shares risk factors with heart disease, and chemotherapy and radiation therapy can weaken the heart and lead to serious complications.

Cardio-oncology is a new field of care focused on managing heart disease before, during, and after cancer treatment. We help you reduce heart risks and complications, improving your treatment outcomes and long-term health.

Why Choose Us for Cardio-Oncology Care

  • Unique treatment program: We are one of the few institutions that offer specialized cardio-oncology care. Your heart and cancer treatments come together for the best results possible.
  • Personalized care: Cardio-oncology adds heart health to the factors affecting your cancer treatment. Starting with a personalized heart risk assessment, your treatment plan is tailored to your needs to be more effective.
  • Support through the whole journey: From diagnosis to survivorship, our team is here to guide your treatment journey — even if your needs change.
  • International Registries. We provide our patients with specialized care and services to meet the needs of our international patients.
Dr. Vinisha Garg
“Many people do not realize the overlap of cancer and cardiac disease. Maintaining heart health is critical in preventing delays or early cessation of cancer treatments. Our expert team helps you take control of your risk factors and optimize your heart health.”

Conditions We Treat

We provide treatment if you’re suffering from or have a high risk for heart conditions related to cancer or its treatment. Some of the most common conditions include:

What to Expect

The first step to developing your personalized treatment plan is a thorough assessment. We’ll identify any potential cardiovascular risks you could face during your cancer treatment, then determine the best course of action for your needs. Our goal is to ensure you receive the highest possible quality of care with the lowest possible level of risk.

Your First Visit

At your first visit, our cardio-oncology team will ask you detailed questions about your medical history and conduct a thorough physical exam. Because this assessment informs your treatment, we take care developing an accurate picture of your health. Bringing the following items can help in this process:

  • Medical records (some of which we may have if you’re a current LLUH patient)
  • Prior treatment and consultation notes
  • Complete list of your medications, vitamins and supplements

Before your visit ends, we’ll answer any questions you may have, help you understand our recommended treatment plan, and go over next steps. If you need further testing, our team will help you set up appointments in a timely manner to avoid treatment delays. We’ll also connect with your referring physician and oncology team to make sure your care is seamless.

Diagnosis

Your next step is the diagnosis of other conditions that may pose heart health risks during cancer treatment. You’ll receive a cardiovascular risk screening to check for diabetes, high cholesterol, thyroid conditions and kidney conditions, which may affect your treatment. Depending on your condition, you may require:

  • Electrocardiogram (ECG), which measures your heart’s electrical activity
  • Echocardiography (heart echo or ultrasound), the most common heart imaging technique
  • Echo strain imaging, a heart echo that can help measure the function of the heart muscle
  • Other imaging tests, including cardiac MRI, cardiac CT, and positron emission tomography (PET scan)
  • Holter monitor, a wearable, portable ECG that monitors your heart for up to a few days
  • Exercise stress test (or heart stress test), which measures how your heart works during exercise on a treadmill
  • Laboratory tests, including testing for cardiac biomarkers to measure heart damage or stress

Treatment

Your care is tailored to your unique diagnosis and health needs, and may change over the course of your treatment journey. Whatever type of treatment you need, we’ll coordinate with your oncology team for the best possible results.

Management of Heart Conditions in Patients with Cancer

If you have cancer, you’re more likely to have pre-existing heart conditions. To prevent medication interactions and adverse side effects, we’ll manage these conditions using a personalized approach. It’s our goal to manage your cardiovascular health so you have fewer risks during your cancer treatment.

Risk Assessment Before Cancer Treatment

Before you start treatment, we work directly with your oncologist to develop a thorough risk assessment. We’ll identify potential cardiovascular complications that may result from cancer therapies, and adjust your treatment plan where needed.

Monitoring and Treatment of Cardiac Toxicities from Cancer Treatment 

Certain cancer therapies are known to affect the heart and cardiovascular system both in the short-term and long-term. We catch these complications as soon as possible to improve your health today and your ability to tolerate future cancer treatments.

Risk Assessment for Cancer Survivors

Survivors of cancer have an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. We’ll help you understand what you can do to help prevent disease, including making heart-healthy lifestyle choices.

Follow-Up

Just like your treatment plan, your follow-ups will be uniquely tailored to your needs. You may need routine image monitoring or follow-up visits with our cardiologists every six to twelve months. 

"Even when the patient lost hope and doesn’t know what to do, [Dr. Garg] will always help find the answers and be there for her patient. Thank you, Dr. Garg and your teams for providing us with such great care, we appreciate it."

Take the Next Step

If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, cardio-oncology care can help you avoid serious complications from heart disease. Contact us to schedule a risk assessment before cancer treatment.