Cardiovascular disease and cancer. A madness?

images (1)Is it possible the existence of a bond between cardiovascular disease and cancer? This was one of the first questions aimed to my fellows at a briefing.

Really, I acknowledge that to figure a link is difficult. Yet, there is a connection. Different theories could explain such as relationship:

  • Overall, there are several mechanisms linked to cardiovascular disease such as inflammation, tissular, hormonal activation (erythropoietin) that can be present in the development of a future cancer in any individual.
  • Usually, the patients affected of cardiovascular disease (HBP, ischemic heart disease, etc) are prone to undergo several image diagnostic tests with all the radiation included in this context; a fact that could boost the evolution of any cancer.
  • Some medications use in CVD, at least in theory, has the possibility of developing cancer because of the angiogenesis they produce (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor, and angiotensin II receptor blocker)

Although the possibility exists, more studies are needed to clarify this staggering linkage between CVD and cancer as Hasin and col (1) have stressed out recently in one study that found association between heart failure and cancer.

I think that the latter report adds another point to highlight the importance of treating CVD early in life.


  • Hasin T, Gerber Y, McNallan S, Weston S, Kushwaha S, Nelson t, et al. Patients With Heart Failure Have an Increased Risk of Incident Cancer. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2013;62(10):881-886.



Note. This editorial has been written by Dr. Guillermo Alberto Perez Fernandez, author of this blog, and reflects his personal opinion about the topic.

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