Heart Medication Prevents Cardiac Damage Caused by Some Breast Cancer Treatments, Study Finds

Heart Medication Prevents Cardiac Damage Caused by Some Breast Cancer Treatments, Study Finds
Heart medication can be prescribed for patients with early-stage breast cancer undergoing chemotherapy with treatments like Herceptin (trastuzumab) to prevent cardiac damage and failure associated with this treatment, according to the results of a clinical trial. This study, “Multidisciplinary Approach To Novel Therapies In Cardio-Oncology Research (MANTICORE 101–Breast): A Randomized Trial For The Prevention Of Trastuzumab-Associated Cardiotoxicity,” was published in The Journal of Clinical Oncology. Patients with early-stage breast cancer often are treated with chemotherapies like Herceptin, which target the HER-2 gene and greatly improve survival. But these treatments may increase the risk of heart failure by five times, a condition that is as serious as cancer itself. To analyze whether heart medication could be given in combination with Herceptin to patients, researchers in Canada developed the MANTICORE trial (NCT01016886), which enrolled patients with HER2-positive early breast cancer who were randomly assigned to receive either treatment with heart medications perindopril (an ACE inhibitor, 33 patients), bisoprolol (a beta blocker, 31 patients), or a placebo (30 patients). The treatments were administered in combination with Herceptin for one year. The study was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Alberta Cancer Foundation. Patients were evaluated by cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) at the study’s start and after 17 cycles of drug therapy to assess left ventricular volumes and left ventricular ejection fraction
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