Heart failure may increase the risk of developing cancer, a study has found.
Up to 920,000 people in the UK are thought to be living with the condition, which happens when the heart is not pumping blood around the body as well as it should – often following damage to the organ’s muscles from a heart attack.
Now researchers who have been tracking people with heart failure over ten years have found they are more likely to be diagnosed with cancer.
The study of more than 200,000 people found around a quarter of heart failure patients went on to get cancer, compared to just 16 per cent of those without the heart condition.
Women with heart failure were 85 per cent more likely to develop cancer, while men had a 69 per cent increased risk. Evidence suggests a failing heart may produce proteins which cause inflammation, and this could make tumours more likely to form in the body.