Cancer may lurk behind major internal bleeding in cardiovascular disease patients
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IMAGE: From left, Stuart Connolly, Sonia Anand and John Eikelboom are investigators of the Population Health Research Institute of McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences. view more 

Credit: Hamilton Health Sciences

HAMILTON, ON (August 26, 2018) – Patients with cardiovascular disease who develop major internal bleeding are much more likely to be diagnosed with cancer, a large international clinical trial has found.

Patients with gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding are 18 times more likely to be diagnosed with GI tract cancer, and those who major genitourinary (GU) tract bleeding are 80-fold more likely to be diagnosed with GU cancer, than patients without internal GI or GU bleeding, respectively.

The study results are part of a presentation today at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Munich, Germany. The clinical trial, called Cardiovascular Outcomes for People Using Anticoagulation Strategies (COMPASS), is led by the Population Health Research Institute (PHRI), a joint institute of McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS).

The COMPASS study involves more than 27,000 patients with coronary or peripheral artery disease in 33 countries.

Previously, COMPASS found that the combination of rivaroxaban combined with aspirin reduces cardiovascular death, stroke or heart attack by 24% compared with aspirin alone. Increased

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