Author(s): Meinardi MT
PURPOSE: To determine whether long-term survivors of metastatic testicular cancer have an increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity more than 10 years after chemotherapy.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Eighty-seven patients treated with cisplatin-containing chemotherapy before 1987 who were in remission for at least 10 years and whose ages were not equal to 50 years at the time of analysis were evaluated for the occurrence of cardiovascular events. Sixty-two of 87 patients were additionally evaluated for cardiac damage and cardiovascular risk factors. Their cardiovascular risk profile was compared with that of 40 patients with comparable age and follow-up duration treated with orchidectomy only for stage I disease.
RESULTS: Major cardiac events were found in five (6%) of the 87 patients (age at time of event, 30 to 42 years; time after chemotherapy, 9 to 16 years): two with myocardial infarction and three with angina pectoris with proven myocardial ischemia. An increased observed-to-expected ratio of 7.1 (95% confidence interval, 1.9 to 18.3) for coronary artery disease, as compared with the general male Dutch population, was found. In addition, one patient experienced a cerebrovascular accident. Exercise ECG did not reveal cases of subclinical coronary artery disease. Echocardiography showed normal systolic left ventricular function in most patients, but diastolic left ventricular function was disturbed in 33% of the patients. Of 62 chemotherapy patients, 79% had hypercholesterolemia, 39% had hypertension, 25% still experienced Raynaud's phenomenon, and 22% had microalbuminuria. Compared with patients with stage I disease, the chemotherapy patients had higher blood pressure and higher total cholesterol and triglyceride levels and were more insulin-resistant.
CONCLUSION: In long-term survivors of metastatic testicular cancer, we observed a significantly increased risk for occurrence of cardiac events accompanied by a persisting unfavorable cardiovascular risk profile. Accurate follow-up, focused on cardiovascular complications and aimed at intervention in these young cancer survivors, seems to be important.-->Journal of Stem Cell Research & Therapy