Dr. Donald Dengel, professor of kinesiology and director of the Laboratory of Integrative Human Physiology (LIHP), presented work at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2013 that shows how cancer treatment takes a toll on the hearts of child survivors.
"Research has shown childhood cancer survivors face heart and other health problems decades after treatment," said Dengel. "But researchers had not—until now—looked at the heart health effects of childhood cancer treatment while survivors are still children."
Dengel and colleagues measured artery stiffness, thickness and function in 319 U.S. boys and girls (ages 9-18) who had survived leukemia or cancerous tumors. Participants had survived 5 years or longer since their initial cancer diagnosis.