HealthDay News — Dexrazoxane can prevent anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity and should be used for cardioprotection in children and young adults, according to a review published online September 4 in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

Noting that childhood cancer survivors are at increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, Kelley K. Hutchins, DO, MPH, from the Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Detroit, and colleagues looked at the prevention of cardiotoxicity in survivors of childhood cancer.

The researchers note that anthracyclines, which are among the most commonly used chemotherapeutic agents for treating children with hematologic and solid tumor malignancies, are associated with cardiac conditions. Cardiotoxic effects include cardiomyopathy, heart failure, myocardial infarction, conduction defects, valve disease, pericardial disease, and hypertension; risk increases with a cumulative dose of 300 mg/m², although cardiotoxicity can develop at lower cumulative doses. Late effects from anthracycline can be prevented with dexrazoxane, without reducing the anti-neoplastic effects or event-free survival. Other potentially cardioprotective agents have been developed and tested but await large-scale clinical trials.

“Dexrazoxane should therefore be a concomitant treatment among children, adolescents, and young adults treated with anthracyclines now and in the foreseeable future,” the authors write.

Chiron, Pfizer, and Roche Diagnostics contributed funding for the study. Pfizer is a manufacturer of dexrazoxane.

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