Anti-cancer drugs-induced arterial injury: risk stratification, prevention, and treatment

Edit Gara, Kristóf György Csikó, Zoltán Ruzsa, Gábor Földes, Béla Merkely

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Vascular side effects of standard chemotherapeutic drugs and novel anti-tumor agents complicate treatment cycles, increase non-cancer-related mortality rates, and decrease the quality of life in cancer survivors. Arterial thromboembolic events (ATEE) are associated with most anti-cancer medications. Previous articles have reported a variety of vascular events including ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction as one of the most severe acute arterial attacks. Cardiologists should play an early role in identifying those at high risk for vascular complications and tailor anti-thrombotic therapies in keeping with thromboembolic and bleeding risks. Early preventive steps and individualized chemotherapy may decrease anti-tumor treatment-related vascular events. Here, we aim to provide an extensive review of anti-tumor drug-induced vascular injury (DIVI), pathomechanisms, and risk stratification underlining arterial events. We give a summary of clinical manifestations, treatment options, and possible preventive measures of DIVI. Additionally, the treatment of modifiable risk factors and tailored choice of chemotherapy must be considered in all oncology patients to prevent DIVI. We propose a complex tool for ATEE risk stratification which is warranted for early prediction leading to less frequent complications in cancer patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number72
JournalMedical Oncology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2019


  • Anti-cancer treatment
  • Drug-induced vascular injury
  • Prevention
  • Risk stratification
  • Thromboembolic events

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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