Cancer research trials

Some people may be offered the chance to take part in a clinical trial as part of their cancer treatment. These trials may test new treatments such as chemotherapy drugs or targeted therapies. Doctors may not know about all of the effects these new drugs have on the heart when they are tested.

If you take part in a clinical trial you will be monitored very closely during your treatment for any side effects. Make sure you ask your doctor about any known or possible side effects of the treatment, so that you can weigh up its benefits and disadvantages. If you develop any symptoms during the trial, including heart-related symptoms, tell your doctor or nurse so that these can be assessed and treated quickly.

Working together to create information for you

We worked with British Heart Foundation to write our content on heart health.

Thank you to all of the people affected by cancer who reviewed what you're reading and have helped our information to develop.

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Back to Cancer treatment and your heart


A few chemotherapy drugs affect the heart. Your hospital team will talk to you about any risks of the drugs you’re having.


Radiotherapy only affects the heart if it’s in the area treated. Improvements in radiotherapy treatment have reduced the risk of problems.

Hormonal therapies

Treatment with hormonal therapies can sometimes increase the risk of heart problems.

Surgery for cancer

You’ll usually have tests to check your heart before you have an operation to treat a cancer.

Managing heart problems

If you have heart problems during cancer treatment, your doctors will help you decide on the best way to manage them.