(WYTV)- Heart disease and breast cancer are two of the deadliest diseases among women, but they’re not completely separate.

These two health concerns are often related.

Heart disease remains the number one killer of women and some cancer treatments can damage the heart. For example, a cancer treatment can lead to a blocked artery.

In fact, older breast cancer patients more often die of heart disease than the cancer itself. Oncologists and cardiologists can work together to give patients the best chance against both diseases.

“There has to be so much more in this field as the number of patients in the United States and worldwide increase in terms of having cancer and in terms of having heart disease,” said Dr. Laxmi Mehta.

Breast cancer and heart disease both share common risk factors such as lack of exercise and obesity. So women who follow the American Heart Association’s recommendations on lifestyle not only reduce their risk of heart disease, but also cut their risk of breast cancer.

Many major hospitals now have cardio-oncology specialists who help women with both diseases.