Seventies and Eighties rocker Eddie Money will resume cancer treatment after a number of months dealing with a heart complications. Cancer treatment is extremely hard on the body, and for a huge percentage of people, who have heart issues before or during cancer, these issues are important and sometimes overlooked.
Money spent three months in the hospital after a heart valve operation in May, according to TMZ. During that time, he was forced to stop treatments for his stage four esophageal cancer.READ MORE
Money rose to fame with hit singles like “Baby Hold On” and “Two Tickets To Paradise,” before he became a big part of the MTV music video scene in the early eighties. His career stumbled when he became addicted to drugs, and he ultimately entered into 12 step drug rehabilitation. His return to fame came with his 1986 album can’t hold back, particularly with the song “Take Me Home Tonight.” He and is family are now the star of a reality TV series on the AXS TV network called “Real Money.”
His stay in the hospital was a result of pneumonia that he developed during his operation.
The two biggest causes of esophageal cancer are smoking and acid reflux (heartburn). Over 17,500 people were diagnosed with esophageal cancer in 2019, and about 16,000 people died from the disease.
Revealing his cancer diagnosis
Money revealed his cancer earlier this summer, saying at the time that keeping his cancer a secret would be dishonest, and he wanted to be honest with his fans and supporters.
“What I don’t want to do is I don’t want to keep the fact that I had cancer from everybody — it’s not honest,” he said in a clip from his reality television series Real Money. “I want to be honest with everybody.”
Part of the reason Money said he wanted to be so open about his illness, was to let people know that there is still hope when you get a cancer diagnosis, “I want people to know that cancer’s come a long way, and not everybody dies from cancer like they did in the fifties and the sixties.”
Money’s cancer journey began when he went in for a routine check-up, “I thought I was just going in to get a check-up and he told me that I got cancer,” he said.
“Eddie’s been diagnosed with stage four esophageal cancer,” said his wife Laurie. “It’s in his esophagus, at the top of his stomach is where the tumor is, and it’s also spread to his liver.”
He said that he was really upset and that the news was hard to hear at first, “When we found out that I had cancer, and it was stage four and it was in my liver, and my lymph nodes, and a little bi tin my stomach, I mean it was — it hit me really hard.”
And that he still doesn’t know what’s going to happen, but he feels lucky and grateful for every day, “Am I gonna live a long time? Who knows. It’s in god’s hands. But you know what, I’ll take every day I can get. Every day above ground is a good day.”
Information about heart problems and cancer treatment
While we don’t know exactly what complications Money had with his heart, we do know that cancer treatment can sometimes increase the risk of heart problems. A new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging is calling for cardiac monitoring to be a higher priority for breast cancer survivors who are considered high-risk. While it’s not common, cardiovascular disease is actually the second leading cause of death among breast cancer survivors, behind only secondary malignancies, partly because of the damage some cancer therapies can cause to the heart.
The new study finds that the risk of heart failure is higher in people who were treated with certain types of chemotherapy. Among people who were treated with trastuzumab-based chemotherapy or Herceptin, 8.3 percent developed heart failure compared to nearly 3 percent of patients who did not receive trastuzumab.
Dr. Emanuel Finet, Cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic Cancer Center, on the link between chemotherapy and higher risk of heart problems
Researchers also concluded that the risk of heart failure increases with age for these patients, but that doesn’t mean younger people are immune. That’s because younger breast cancer patients are often given more aggressive chemotherapy. “In examining the rate of both cardiac monitoring and cardiotoxicity, we could begin to address the controversial issues of whether cardiac monitoring is warranted in young breast cancer patients,” says Mariana Henry, lead study author and Yale School of Public Health graduate student.
Cancer patients can be considered high risk for heart problems for a handful of reasons, including age, sex, pre-existing cardiovascular disease, obesity, and smoking, according to Dr. Emanuel Finet, a transplant cardiologist at Cleveland Clinic Cancer Center.
Information about esophageal cancer
Most esophageal cancers start in the innermost lining of the esophagus (the epithelium) and then grow into deeper layers over time.
Only 5 percent of all patients with advanced esophageal cancer—meaning cancer that has spread beyond the esophagus to other parts of the body—survive for 5 years.
Historically, patients with advanced esophageal cancer have had limited treatment options, particularly after their disease has progressed. For the advanced stages of esophageal cancer, doctors usually turn to conventional chemotherapy. But this chemo is largely used to relieve pain; historically, it hasn’t been shown to have long-term benefits. Now, some esophageal cancer patients are also being treated with immunotherapy, which used the body’s own immune system to fight the disease.
Esophageal cancer diagnoses are grade on a scale from GX to G3. GX stands for “the grade cannot be assessed.” G1, or Grade 1 means the cancer cells look more like normal esophagus tissue. G3, or Grade 3 means the cancer cells look very abnormal. And G2, or Grade 2 falls somewhere in between G1 and G3. These grades are often abbreviated to “low grade” and “high grade.”
The symptoms of esophageal cancer include:
- Problems swallowing – often there is a feeling like the food is stuck in the throat or chest, or even choking on food. The medical term for this is “dysphagia” and it can often be mild in the beginning, and get worse over time.
- Excess mucus or saliva – This occurs because as the esophagus grows, people begin producing more saliva to help food pass through the esophagus.
- Chest pain – Some people have discomfort in the middle of their chest, or a feeling of pressure or burning in the chest.
- Weight loss – swallowing problems keep people from eating as much food, which makes them lose weight unintentionally. Decreased appetite and increased metabolism from the cancer also contribute.
- Hoarseness, chronic cough, vomiting, hiccups, bone pain, bleeding into the esophagus
There are a number of ways that doctors test for esophageal cancer. They include:
- Imaging tests – Using x-rays and other techniques, doctors can create images of the inside of your body
- Barium swallow – After you swallow a thick substance called barium, doctors take x-rays, and the esophagus will be outlined clearly with the liquid.
- Other scans including CT scan, MRI, PET scan
- Endoscopy – Using an endoscope (a long thin tube) doctors pass a camera into your body, to view and remove parts of the esophagus for biopsy
- Blood test