Clinical Edge

Summaries of Must-Read Clinical Literature, Guidelines, and FDA Actions

Cancer Treatment-Induced Arrhythmia with TCAs

J Am Heart Assoc; ePub 2018 Oct 13; Nickel, et al

Compared with anthracyclines, treatment with novel targeted chemotherapeutic agents (TCAs) was associated with a significantly reduced risk of new-onset arrhythmia diagnosis during the first 6 months of treatment, according to a recent study. 5,026 patients were identified, of whom 2,951 (58.7%) received TCAs and 2,075 (41.3%) received anthracycline chemotherapy. Cancer treatment-induced arrhythmia (CTIA) was defined as any new arrhythmia diagnosis code within 6 months after treatment initiation. Researchers found:

  • In the overall cohort, 601 (12.0%) patients developed CTIA.
  • Patients with CTIA were significantly older and more likely to have hypertension, diabetes mellitus, congestive heart failure, coronary disease, and sleep apnea.
  • The incidence of CTIA at 6 months was significantly lower in the TCA group (9.3% vs 15.8%).
  • In a multivariate analysis, treatment with TCAs compared with anthracycline chemotherapy was associated with a significantly lower risk of CTIA (HR, 0.60).


Nickel AC, Patel A, Saba NF, Leon AR, El-Chami MF, Merchant FM. Incidence of cancer treatment-induced arrhythmia associated with novel targeted chemotherapeutic agents. [Published online ahead of print October 13, 2018]. J Am Heart Assoc. doi:10.1161/JAHA.118.010101.

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