The survival of patients with cancer has dramatically improved over the past 30 years with the introduction of new therapeutic agents. However certain cancer therapies may produce serious side effects on the heart, with the result that cancer survivors may develop later complications such as arrhythmias, valvular heart disease, coronary artery disease, and heart failure. The awareness of the importance of this heart damage in this setting has led to the development of a group of specialized cardiologists (“Cardio-Oncologists”) who work closely with the oncologists to facilitate cancer therapy and limit cardiac complications. Cardio-Oncologists, have expertise in preventing and treating the cardiac complications of cancer and cancer therapy. The Cardio-Oncology program at Washington University School of Medicine works closely with the Siteman Cancer Center to provide expertise in diagnostic testing, medical management, and interventional and surgical procedures for cancer patients.
Goals of the Cardio-Oncology Program:
- Partner with oncologists to provide rapid consultations utilizing our special expertise in the area of cancer-derived cardiotoxicity and work closely with them in situations where a combined approach is essential.
- Assist in screening for cardiac injury risk prior to initiating chemotherapy so that cardiac injury can be prevented or identified at the earliest opportunity to limit long-term harm.
- Minimize delays in arranging consultations and office visits. Cancer therapy cannot wait, and the goal of the program is to see new outpatients within one week or less.
- Coordination of care with the advanced heart failure program, as needed, for cardiac resynchronization therapy, circulatory assist devices, and cardiac transplantation.
- Dissemination of knowledge through educational programs in cardio-oncology to oncologists, cardiologists and physicians in training
- Creation of new knowledge through participation in multicenter clinical trials that are evaluating protocols for the detection, prevention, and treatment of cardiac toxicity in the setting of chemotherapy
- Improved surveillance of cardiac structure and function through the use of advanced cardiac imaging, including:
- Advanced echocardiographic imaging techniques through 3D quantification and myocardial strain-rate imaging
- Non-invasive evaluation of coronary artery disease through computer tomographic angiography (CTA)
- Use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging to evaluate myocardial fibrosis, inflammation, edema, and cardiac function
Cardio-Oncology Physicians and Staff
Make an appointment
Referring Physicians: 314-362-1291
Patients (please identify yourself as a cancer patient if an urgent clinic visit is needed): 314-362-1291 or 888-210-8375
Washington University and Barnes-Jewish Heart & Vascular Center
Center for Advanced Medicine
Washington University Medical Center
4921 Parkview Place Suite 8A
St. Louis, MO 63110
Heart & Vascular Center in South County
5201 Midamerica Plaza, Suite 2300
St. Louis, MO 63129
Heart & Vascular Center in West County
1020 North Mason, Suite 100
St. Louis, MO 63141