Oncology professionals' perspectives towards cardiac surveillance in breast cancer patients with high cardiotoxicity risk: A qualitative study
SourcePLoS One, 16, 3, (2021), article e0249067
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectRadboudumc 16: Vascular damage RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 9: Rare cancers RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
Breast cancer (BC) patients have an increased risk of developing cancer therapy-related cardiac dysfunction (CTRCD) and cardiovascular morbidity, which seems to have a substantial prognostic impact. Oncologists, in collaboration with dedicated cardiologists, have the opportunity to perform cardiovascular risk stratification. Despite guideline recommendations, strategies to detect cardiac damage at an early stage are not structurally implemented in clinical practice. The perspectives of oncology professionals regarding cardiac surveillance in BC patients have not been qualitatively evaluated. We aim to explore the perceptions of oncology professionals regarding cardiac surveillance in BC patients and, more specifically, the influencing factors of delivering cardiac surveillance. A qualitative study with semi-structured interviews was conducted and thematically analyzed. Twelve oncology professionals participated in this study. Four themes were selected to answer the study objectives: (1) sense of urgency, (2) multidisciplinary collaboration, (3) patient burden, and (4) practical tools for cardiac surveillance. Most professionals did not feel the need to deliver cardiac surveillance as they considered the incidence of CTRCD as rare. Multidisciplinary collaboration was also perceived as unnecessary, and cardiac surveillance was considered disproportionately burdensome with respect to its benefits. Nevertheless, professionals affirmed the need for practical tools to deliver cardiac surveillance. Most professionals are currently unaware of CTRCD incidence and cardiac surveillance benefits. Encouraging multidisciplinary collaboration and improving their knowledge of cardiotoxic effects of treatments and possibility of early detection can lead to structured cardiac surveillance for breast cancer patients.
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