There is significant interplay between cancer and cardiovascular disease involving shared risk factors, cross disease communication where cardiovascular events can influence cancer recurrence, and mortality rates and cardiotoxicity from cancer treatments with resultant increased cardiovascular mortality and morbidity in cancer patients. This is a major cause of death in many long-term cancer survivors. As a result, cardio-oncology, which involves the prevention, early detection, and optimal treatment of cardiovascular disease in patients treated for cancer, is expanding globally. However, there is still limited awareness of its importance and limited application of the lessons already learnt. Primary care physicians, and their clinical teams, especially nursing colleagues, have a foundation role in the management of all patients, and this paper outlines areas where they can lead in the cardio-oncology management of cancer patients. Although there is currently a lack of an adequate clinical framework or shared care plan, primary care physicians have a role to play in the various phases of cancer treatment: pre-therapy, during therapy, and survivorship.
- Primary Care