Radiation-Induced Cardiovascular Toxicities

Curr Treat Options Oncol. 2022 Oct;23(10):1388-1404. doi: 10.1007/s11864-022-01012-9. Epub 2022 Sep 10.


Several seminal papers over the last decade have furthered our recognition of radiation-induced heart disease (RIHD) as an important potential toxicity following radiation therapy (RT) to the chest. Investigators continue to evaluate the subacute and long-term effects of RT. In addition, studies are determining whether certain cardiac substructures are more sensitive to radiation, working to identify risk factors for the development of RIHD, and testing screening and mitigation strategies for RIHD. Multiple groups and expert consensus guidelines have published whole-heart and cardiac substructure dose constraints based on available data and cancer type. The authors recommend readers to familiarize themselves with the guidelines for screening and mitigating RIHD in adults and children, which advocate for cardiovascular risk assessment and reduction before and following RT, as well as cardiovascular imaging at appropriate follow-up intervals for early recognition of subclinical cardiovascular disease. Referrals to cardiology or cardio-oncology can also be helpful in prevention, screening, and mitigation strategies.

Keywords: Cardiac; Cardio-oncology; Heart; Radiation; Toxicity.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / epidemiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / etiology
  • Child
  • Heart / radiation effects
  • Heart Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Neoplasms* / etiology
  • Neoplasms* / radiotherapy
  • Radiation Injuries* / diagnosis
  • Radiation Injuries* / epidemiology
  • Radiation Injuries* / etiology