Methodist Healthcare
February 06, 2015

THE NEW CARDIO-ONCOLOGY program at Methodist Hospital is one of a select few of its kind in the country and the ­ first in South Texas. This innovative program is dedicated to addressing the cardiovascular side effects of cancer therapy and maximizing cardiovascular outcomes for cancer survivors. “We have a core team of cardiologists devoted to this program,” explains J. Fernando Triana, MD, Methodist Healthcare Division Medical Director of Cardiovascular Service Line. “They are led by Anatole Trakhtenbroit, MD, and have developed the protocols and reporting systems for follow-up of this group of patients. We just completed a review of our first 100 evaluations, and we can already see a significant clinical impact.” Advanced chemotherapy and radiation treatments have greatly improved cancer patient survival throughout the years. However, when treating cancer, some of the treatments may cause lasting damage to a patient’s heart. This is especially true if the patient is at risk for heart disease.

PREVENTING HEART DAMAGE: The oncologists and cardiologists at Methodist Hospital are working as a team to predict, monitor and manage the effect these treatments have on the heart. Our goal is to help patients complete cancer treatment without developing such damage. We use state-of-the-art technology to identify and immediately treat the cardiotoxicity that can be caused by cancer treatment. And our care does not change or interrupt the patient’s cancer therapy.

Other benefits to the patient are that:

  • Early cardiac testing and regular monitoring can help prevent cardiac complications for patients being treated with various cancer therapies.
  • If patients with previous heart problems need cancer treatment, the program allows early identification, adjustment of cardiovascular therapy and closer monitoring to individualize the clinical course of each patient.

FOLLOW-UP CARE: Our program also includes regular screening and treatment for new patients and long-term cancer survivors for cardiotoxicity and other complications not directly related to cancer therapy, which can occur months or years after oncologic treatment. To learn more about how our team is working together to promote the cardiovascular health of cancer patients, speak to your physician or call 210-575-6525.