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The Crossroads of Geriatric Cardiology and Cardio-Oncology


Cancer and cardiovascular disease (CVD) are two major causes of mortality in older adults. With improved survival and outcomes from cancer and CVD, the role of the geriatrician is evolving. Geriatricians provide key skills to facilitate patient-centered and value-based care in the growing older population of cancer patients (and survivors). Cancer treatment in older adults is particularly injurious with respect to complications stemming from cancer therapy and as well as to CVD related to cancer therapy in the context of physiologic aging. To best meet their natural potential as caregiving leaders, geriatricians must hone skills and insights pertaining to oncologic and cardiovascular care, insights that can inform and enhance key management expertise. In this paper, we will review common chemotherapy and radiation-induced cardiovascular complications, screening recommendations, and advance the concept of a geriatric, cardiology, and oncology collaboration. We assert that geriatricians are well suited to a leadership role in the care of older cardio-oncology patients and in the education of primary care physicians and subspecialists on geriatric principles.

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