Cardiotoxicity After Anthracycline Treatment in Survivors of Adult Cancers: Monitoring by USCOM, Echocardiography and Serum Biomarkers

Alessandro Pastore, Sandra Geiger, Dorothee Baur, Andreas Hausmann, Johanna Tischer, Sophia Horster, Hans Joachim Stemmler


Background: Anthracyclines are agents with a well known documented anti-tumoral activity. Cardiac side effects are the principal toxicity. Here we evaluate and monitor the onset of late anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity with real-time CW-Doppler ultrasound cardiac output monitoring (USCOMĀ®) and echocardiography in combination with serum biomarkers.

Methods: Fifty-two patients without cardiac disease who had received an anthracycline-based regimen for various cancer types were included in this study. Patients' hemodynamic parameters as stroke volume (SV USCOM (mL)) and ejection fraction (EF ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY (%)) were measured with USCOM and echocardiography and correlated to serum biomarkers (NT-pro-BNP and cTnT).

Results: Eighteen patients (34.6%) developed cardiac disease (NYHA I-III). An increasing cumulative anthracycline dose was associated with a decrease of the EF determined by echocardiography as well the SV by USCOM and with a higher NYHA class. Those patients who experienced cardiac disease showed a reduction of the EF and SV and increased serum biomarkers.

Conclusions: Real-time CW-Doppler USCOM, is a fast and reliable method to monitor late hemodynamic changes as a symptom of anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity comparable to the findings by echocardiography and serum biomarkers.

World J Oncol. 2013;4(1):18-25


Cardiotoxicity; Anthracyclines; CW-Doppler; USCOM; Ultrasound

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