Cardio-Oncology: A Continually Evolving Subspecialty in Oncology Nursing

cardio-oncology, cancer, heart disease, cardiotoxicities, specialty role, nursing
CJON 2021, 25(1), 93-96. DOI: 10.1188/21.CJON.93-96

Cardio-oncology is a unique subspecialty within oncology nursing that focuses on the assessment, identification, and management of cardiotoxicity induced or exacerbated by cancer treatment. Nurses are pivotal to the delivery of evidence-based assessment of and care for individuals who have preexisting cardiac conditions, as well as those for whom cardiac complications are related to the known and emerging toxicities of cancer treatment.


  • Cardio-oncology is a continually evolving specialty in the field of oncology nursing.
  • Cardio-oncology is focused on the unique cardiac toxicities that are caused by, as well as preexisting cardiac conditions that can be exacerbated by, a cancer diagnosis and its treatment.
  • As more patients receive care—both those with preexisting cardiac conditions and those with known or newly discovered treatment-related cardiotoxicities—it is important for oncology nurses to understand the foundational principles of cardio-oncology care, as well as opportunities for subspecialty in this area.
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