Background:

The impact of adverse childhood experiences (ACE, e.g., abuse, neglect, and/or household dysfunction experienced before the age of 18) and resilience on risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) has not previously been investigated in adult survivors of childhood cancer.

Methods:

We conducted a nested case–control study among long-term, adult-aged survivors of childhood cancer from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study. Self-report questionnaires ascertained ACEs and resilience, and scores were compared between cases with serious/life-threatening CVD and controls without CVD matched on demographic and cardiotoxic treatment factors.

Results:

Among 95 cases and 261 controls, the mean ACE score was 1.4 for both groups; 53.4% of survivors endorsed ≥1 ACE. No association was observed between ACEs or resilience and CVD in adjusted models.

Conclusions:

ACEs and resilience do not appear to contribute to CVD risk for adult survivors of childhood cancer with cardiotoxic treatment exposures.

Impact:

Although not associated with CVD in this population, ACEs are associated with serious health issues in other populations. Therefore, future studies could investigate the effects of ACEs on other health outcomes affecting childhood cancer survivors.

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