Cardiac function in childhood cancer survivors treated with vincristine: Echocardiographic results from the DCCSS LATER 2 CARD study

Dutch LATER Study Group, Remy Merkx*, E. (Lieke) A.M. Feijen, Jan M. Leerink, Esmée C. de Baat, Louise Bellersen, Elvira C. van Dalen, Eline van Dulmen-den Broeder, Margriet van der Heiden-van der Loo, Marry M. van den Heuvel-Eibrink, Chris L. de Korte, Jacqueline Loonen, Marloes Louwerens, Cécile M. Ronckers, Arco J. Teske, Wim J.E. Tissing, Andrica C.H. de Vries, Annelies M.C. Mavinkurve-Groothuis, Helena J.H. van der Pal, Gert WeijersWouter E.M. Kok, Leontien C.M. Kremer, Livia Kapusta

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background: Anthracyclines and radiotherapy involving the heart region are cardiotoxic, but the potential cardiotoxicity of vincristine remains unknown. We assessed cardiac function in vincristine-treated >5-year childhood cancer survivors (CCS).

Methods and results: We cross-sectionally compared echocardiograms of 101 vincristine-treated CCS (median age 35 years [range: 17–53], median vincristine dose 63 mg/m2) from the national Dutch Childhood Cancer Survivor Study, LATER cohort, to 101 age- and sex-matched controls. CCS treated with anthracyclines, radiotherapy involving the heart region, cyclophosphamide or ifosfamide were excluded. Twelve CCS (14%) versus four controls (4%; p 0.034) had a decreased left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF; men <52%, women <54%). Mean LVEF was 58.4% versus 59.7% (p 0.050). Global longitudinal strain (GLS) was abnormal in nineteen (24%) CCS versus eight controls (9%; p 0.011). Mean GLS was 19.0% versus 20.1% (p 0.001). No ≥grade 2 diastolic dysfunction was detected. In multivariable logistic regression analysis CCS had higher risk of abnormal GLS (OR 3.55, p 0.012), but not abnormal LVEF (OR 3.07, p 0.065), than controls. Blood pressure and smoking history contributed to variation in LVEF, whereas obesity and diastolic blood pressure contributed to variation in GLS. Cumulative vincristine dose was not associated with either abnormal LVEF or abnormal GLS in multivariable models corrected for age and sex (OR per 50 mg/m2: 0.88, p 0.85 and 1.14, p 0.82, respectively).

Conclusions: Vincristine-treated long-term CCS showed an abnormal GLS more frequently than controls. Their risk for future clinical cardiac events and the role of risk factor modification should be further elucidated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-76
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Cardiology
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 15-Dec-2022


  • cancer survivors
  • Cardiotoxicity
  • Child
  • Echocardiography
  • Left ventricular dysfunction
  • Vincristine

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