Dexrazoxane drug found useful in preventing long-term heart damage in children who receive chemotherapy


Emobileclinic Researchers Corner 


Several studies have shown that chemotherapy drug is life saving in children with cancer. However, in a recent study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, researchers have shown that the effect of the treatment on the heart is worrisome and came up with a preventive drug to mitigate the negative effects on the heart.
The mortality rate of cancer in children has reduced significantly recently, however, the survivors is bedeviled with long-term risks of experiencing side effects related to their treatment. One of the commonest prescribed chemotherapeutic agents in managing children with cancer is Anthrancyclines has been found to also increase the risk of developing conditions that damage the heart.

The team led by Steven Lipshultz, following a review of existing literature on anthracyclines, it was discovered that it can increase patients’ risks of developing several cardiovascular-related conditions. The team also found that dexrazoxane has proven helpful in preventing many of the cardiotoxic effects of anthracycline treatment, without reducing its anticancer effects.
The team according to Dr Lipshultz said their “review defines that the price of treatment for childhood cancer for many survivors is persistent, often progressive, and pervasive cardiotoxicity for those treated with anthracycline chemotherapy “and that they “then show that the accumulated data indicate that this chemotherapy-related heart damage can be ameliorated or prevented by the drug dexrazoxane when given immediately before each anthracycline dose.”

The authors added further that, “if implemented, more children with cancer who are treated with anthracyclines may be cured of their malignancy and with less chemotherapy-associated toxicity and late effects”.

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Steven Lipshultz, et. al (2016): Prevention of Cardiotoxicity among Survivors of Childhood Cancer. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology , doi:10.1111/bcp.13120

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