Childhood Cancer Survivors Have More Blood Pressure Problems

In this Jan. 22, 2017, photo provided by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 15-month-old Ella sits in a hospital bed at the Aflac Cancer Center of Children¿s Healthcare of Atlanta via AP
In this Jan. 22, 2017, photo provided by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 15-month-old Ella sits in a hospital bed at the Aflac Cancer Center of Children¿s Healthcare of Atlanta via AP
TT

Childhood Cancer Survivors Have More Blood Pressure Problems

In this Jan. 22, 2017, photo provided by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 15-month-old Ella sits in a hospital bed at the Aflac Cancer Center of Children¿s Healthcare of Atlanta via AP
In this Jan. 22, 2017, photo provided by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 15-month-old Ella sits in a hospital bed at the Aflac Cancer Center of Children¿s Healthcare of Atlanta via AP

More than one in 12 adult survivors of childhood cancers may have undiagnosed high blood pressure, a US study suggests.

High blood pressure, or hypertension, can be a particular problem for childhood cancer survivors because many of them have heart damage as a result of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Even when they do get diagnosed with high blood pressure, more than one in five of these patients don’t take medication or make lifestyle changes necessary to treat it, the study also found, Reuters reported.

“It is notable that survivors in our study had a higher-than-expected prevalence of hypertension regardless of their specific childhood cancer diagnosis or treatment,” said lead study author Todd Gibson of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

“The good news is that, unlike prior cancer therapy, high blood pressure is a modifiable risk factor,” Gibson said by email.

Previous research has linked cancer drugs known as anthracyclines to weakening of the heart muscle. Research has also tied some radiation therapy to cardiac rhythm disorders and structural damage in arteries and valves.

Deaths from cardiovascular disease are eight times more likely in childhood cancer survivors than in people without a history of tumors early in life.

The current analysis involved 3,016 adults who were part of the St. Jude Lifetime Cohort Study. All had been treated for cancer as kids and survived at least 10 years.

By age 30, 13 percent of them had high blood pressure, the study found. By comparison, the general prevalence of hypertension among 18-to-39-year-olds in the U.S. is about 7 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The proportion of childhood cancer survivors with hypertension climbed to 37 percent by age 40 and exceeded 70 percent by age 50. In the general U.S. population, according to the CDC, only about 30 percent of people ages 40 to 60 have hypertension.

Exposure to chemotherapy or radiation didn’t appear to influence whether cancer survivors developed high blood pressure, according to Reuters.

One limitation of the study is that researchers only had blood pressure measurements from a single visit at each point in time, making it possible that some patients may have been misclassified. Some patients get anxious and develop temporary high blood pressure during checkups.



Gulf States Record High Temperatures After Summer Solstice

Days will gradually shorten as the Earth orbits until the autumnal equinox on September 22 (SPA)
Days will gradually shorten as the Earth orbits until the autumnal equinox on September 22 (SPA)
TT

Gulf States Record High Temperatures After Summer Solstice

Days will gradually shorten as the Earth orbits until the autumnal equinox on September 22 (SPA)
Days will gradually shorten as the Earth orbits until the autumnal equinox on September 22 (SPA)

The Arab Gulf region saw temperatures soar earlier this week after a hot spell, with Makkah, Saudi Arabia, hitting 51 degrees Celsius last Monday.

 

Despite this, Saudi Arabia’s National Center for Meteorology assured Asharq Al-Awsat that current summer temperatures haven’t exceeded those of the past three years, typically ranging from 38 to 48 degrees Celsius over the season’s 92 days.

 

The summer solstice, marking the start of astronomical summer in the Northern Hemisphere, occurred on June 20 at 11:50 PM local time, with the sun directly over the Tropic of Cancer.

 

Days will gradually shorten as the Earth orbits until the autumnal equinox on September 22.

 

In recent days, Saudi Arabia reached highs of 49 degrees Celsius in Al-Qaysumah and Al-Ahsa.

 

Meanwhile, the UAE's Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Al Ain recorded 47 degrees Celsius, and Oman saw its highest temperature of 49.2 degrees Celsius in Al-Dhahirah.

 

Qatar’s Jumayliyah hit 48 degrees Celsius, while Kuwait anticipated 50 degrees Celsius in Jahra.

 

Bahrain expected temperatures to reach 45 degrees Celsius over the weekend.