Ovarian Cancer and Cardiovascular Comorbidity

Anil K. Sood MD Department of Gynecologic Oncology The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Unit 1362, PO Box 301439, Houston, TX, 77030 MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Anil K. Sood MD
Department of Gynecologic Oncology
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Unit 1362, PO Box 301439, Houston, TX, 77030

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study?

Dr. Sood: For women with newly diagnosed ovarian cancer, high heart rate at diagnosis (tachycardia), venous thromboembolism (VTE) occurring after diagnosis and pulmonary hypertension post-diagnosis are independently related to reduced survival after controlling for tumor stage, grade, and extent of cytoreduction. Women with tachycardia lived an average of 4.0 years after diagnosis compared with 5.9 years for women without tachycardia, a 32% reduction in duration of survival. Patients who experienced VTE lived a median 4.1 years after diagnosis, compared with 6.4 yrs for patients who did not experience VTE.


MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected?

Dr. Sood: We did not expect that high heart rate would be independently associated with increased risk for mortality in ovarian cancer patients at diagnosis. Also, in contrast to other studies which reported that ovarian cancer patients tended to die within a few months of their cardiovascular comorbidity, the patients in our study lived an average of 22 months post-VTE.

MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Sood: Careful management of certain cardiovascular comorbidities may have an impact on patients with ovarian cancer. Our findings suggest that increased baseline heart rate and the development of VTE and pulmonary hypertension after cancer diagnosis may be significant predictors of survival in women with ovarian cancer.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Sood: There are many important steps for future research including understanding the mechanisms by which the factors noted above could work to reduce the survival of women with ovarian cancer. Also, other questions remain: will similar findings be noted for patients with other cancers? What are the best approaches for managing patients who do have cardiovascular morbidities and cancer?

Citation:

Impact of cardiovascular comorbidity on ovarian cancer mortality

Shinn EH, Lenihan DJ, Urbauer DL, Basen-Engquist K, Valentine AD, Palmero LC, Woods ML, Patel P, Nick AM, Shahzad MM, Stone RL, Golden A, Atkinson E, Lutgendorf SK, Sood AK.

Behavioral Science, UT M D Anderson Cancer Center.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2013 Sep 17.