Study: Cancer Diagnosis Tied to Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

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By : Suvarna Sheth

Can a cancer diagnosis increase the risk of type 2 diabetes?  New research from Korea attempted to answer just that in a recent study.

It turns out the answer is “yes.”

The team of researchers at Sungkyunkwan University, in Seoul, South Korea studied a general population cohort of 524, 089 men and women for up to 10 years.

Participants between the ages of 20-70 years old without cancer or diabetes were included in the study, which was published in JAMA last week.

A clear correlation was found between patients who developed cancer and type 2 diabetes, even after taking into account precancer risk factors.

The study found that cancer patients were 35 percent more likely to develop diabetes than people without cancer.

Also, the risk of developing diabetes was different based on the type of cancer the patient had:

The risk of developing diabetes with pancreatic cancer was more than 5 times while it was doubled for with liver and kidney cancer.

The data from this large study provide evidence that cancer is associated with an increased risk of diabetes in cancer survivors independent of traditional diabetes risk factors.

The study wasn’t designed to show exactly how cancer exactly causes diabetes.

However, researchers conclude that “physicians should remember that patients with cancer develop other clinical problems, such as diabetes, with higher frequency than individuals without cancer, and should consider routine diabetes screening in these patients.”