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REVIEW  CARDIOVASCULAR PREVENTION AND REHABILITATION: COST-EFFECTIVE AND UNDERUTILIZED TOOLS 

Panminerva Med 2021 June;63(2):170-83

DOI: 10.23736/S0031-0808.21.04303-2

Copyright © 2021 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

The core components of cardio-oncology rehabilitation

Elio VENTURINI 1 , Susan GILCHRIST 2, 3, Elisabetta CORSI 1, Anna DI LORENZO 4, Gianluigi CUOMO 4, Giuseppe D’AMBROSIO 4, Mario PACILEO 5, Antonello D’ANDREA 5, Maria L. CANALE 6, Gabriella IANNUZZO 7, Filippo M. SARULLO 8, Carlo VIGORITO 4, Sandro BARNI 9, Francesco GIALLAURIA 4, 10

1 Unit of Cardiac Rehabilitation, AUSL Toscana Nord-Ovest, Cecina Civil Hospital, Cecina, Livorno, Italy; 2 Department of Clinical Cancer Prevention, Anderson Cancer Center, the University of Texas, Houston, TX, USA; 3 Department of Cardiology, Anderson Cancer Center, the University of Texas, Houston, TX, USA; 4 Division of Internal Medicine and Cardiac Rehabilitation, Department of Translational Medical Sciences, Federico II University, Naples, Italy; 5 Unit of Cardiology and Intensive Care, Umberto I Hospital, Nocera Inferiore, Salerno, Italy; 6 Department of Cardiology, AUSL Toscana Nord-Ovest, Versilia Hospital, Lido di Camaiore, Lucca, Italy; 7 Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, Federico II University, Naples, Italy; 8 Unit of Cardiovascular Rehabilitation, Buccheri La Ferla Fatebenefratelli Hospital, Palermo, Italy; 9 Department of Oncology, ASST Bergamo Ovest, Bergamo, Italy; 10 Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of New England, Armidale, Australia



The increased efficacy of cancer therapy has resulted in greater cancer survival and increasing number of people with cancer and cardiovascular diseases. The sharing of risk factors, the bidirectional relationship between cancer and cardiovascular diseases and the cardiotoxic effect of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, are the cause of the rapid expansion of cardio-oncology. All strategies to preserve cardiovascular health and mitigate the negative effect of cancer therapy, by reducing the cardiovascular risk, must be pursued to enable the timely and complete delivery of anticancer therapy and to achieve the longest remission of the disease. Comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation is an easy-to-use model, even in cancer care, and is the basis of Cardio-Oncology REhabilitation (CORE), an exercise-based multi-component intervention. In addition, CORE, besides using the rationale and knowledge of cardiac rehabilitation, can leverage the network of cardiac rehabilitation services to offer to cancer patients exercise programs, control of risk factors, psychological support, and nutrition counseling. The core components of CORE will be discussed, describing the beneficial effect on cardiorespiratory fitness, quality of life, psychological and physical well-being, and weight management. Furthermore, particular attention will be paid to how CORE can counterbalance the negative effect of therapies in those at heightened cardiovascular risk after a cancer diagnosis. Barriers for implementation, including personal, family, social and of the health care system barriers for a widespread diffusion of the CORE will also be discussed. Finally, there will be a call-to-action, for randomized clinical trials that can test the impact of CORE, on morbidity and mortality.


KEY WORDS: Rehabilitation; Cardiac rehabilitation; Neoplasms; Risk factors; Cardiovascular diseases

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